How to manage your inventory

What is a home inventory management report and why do you need one?

The home inventory management report is a very detailed document which contains a full list of the contents and fixtures in a property. It specifies the condition of every item included and should ideally be supported by photographic evidence.

The home inventory report helps to avoid deposit disputes occurring at the end of the tenancy and helps ensure that a rented property is left in the same condition in which it was originally let.

A check in report can be part of the inventory document or a separate document. It shows the cleanliness of the property on the move in day, notes any issues raised by the tenant, highlights any outstanding repairs, provides meter readings and registers keys.

At the end of the tenancy, a comparative check-out report should be produced that records all of the differences found with further photos or video to support the findings.

Home inventory tips and advice

A comprehensive home inventory should be carried out at the start of the tenancy. It should detail the current state of the property at check-in, providing a clear comparison for how the property should be returned at the end of the tenancy and must be signed by both the tenant and the landlord/agent.

Advice from the Head of Dispute Resolution at mydeposits, Suzy Hershman

According to mydeposits, many deposit disputes are won or lost on the quality of the home inventory and check out documentation…

  1. Always date the reports
  2. Define any of the terms or abbreviations used within the documents for consistency
  3. Fully describe the condition and cleanliness of the property and its contents
  4. Photographic/video evidence should be used to support your reports
  5. Any photos which are not included in the main report should be digitally dated and, if not, signed and dated by your tenant (tip: check your phone/device/camera settings)
  6. You must allow the tenant the opportunity to see and sign the reports
  7. Reports can be compiled by anyone but where they are prepared by a landlord or letting agent the tenant’s signature is a MUST

Make sure your landlord insurance includes building and content covers – especially if you’re renting furbished homes to avoid bad surprises.

Free download

For additional tips and our suggested inventory checklist download your free copy of our how to manage your inventory guide