Moving out: what you need to do
The end of the year is upon us which is often a busy time for tenants who may want to move out. But moving out is not simply a matter of packing up, cleaning up and leaving. Whether you are on a fixed term or periodic agreement, you cannot move out without giving the required notice.
To ensure a smooth process, follow these steps:
- You need to give 14 days’ notice by filling out and giving the property manager/owner the Notice of intention to leave (Form 13). Please note that if you are on a fixed term agreement, it cannot be ended without grounds before the end date unless you have agreement from the property manager/owner to do so.
Pay your rent until the end of the agreement or your vacating date. If you are unsure where your rent is paid up to, you can request a rent ledger from your property manager/owner.
All keys, including garage door remote controls, need to be handed over at the end of the tenancy including any you may have had cut.
Fill out an Exit condition report (form 14a), include your forwarding address, and give it to the property manager/owner. The report shows the condition of the property when you leave and it is recommended that you take photos to support what you have written. Make sure you keep a copy of the report.
The Exit condition report is compared against the Entry condition report (Form 1a) to determine if the property is in the same condition as when you moved in, apart from fair wear and tear. The property manager/owner then inspects the property, makes their own notes on the report, and sends you a copy of the report within 3 business days.
If you are able to do the vacate inspection together with the property manager/owner you can discuss any issues straight away and avoid any confusion. Speak with your property manager/owner in relation to their business processes around vacating so you are informed before you move out. Although there is no requirement in the Act to give tenants the opportunity to go back and rectify any item, most property managers/owners will inform tenants of any cleaning or damage issues and work through solutions regarding how these items can be rectified.
- As long as no money is owed for rent, damages or other costs, you can apply to have your bond money returned on, or after, handover day. To do this, fill out a Refund of rental bond (Form 4), have it signed by the property manager/owner and submit it to the RTA. Providing the RTA with your forwarding address, contact and bank account details on the Refund of rental bond form will ensure your bond refund is not delayed.
- If you and the property manager/owner do not agree on how the bond should be paid out, either you or the property manager/owner can submit a Refund of rental bond form. The RTA will then send the other person a Notice of claim and provide an opportunity to lodge a Dispute resolution request (Form 16). If the RTA does not receive a response within 14 days, the bond will be paid out, as directed, by whoever first lodged the Refund of rental bond form. If there is a response, it will proceed to the RTA‘s free dispute resolution service where a conciliator will try to help resolve the matter. If agreement is not reached, a Notice of Unresolved Dispute is issued to the person who lodged the dispute resolution request form and they will have 7 days to apply to the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) for a decision. They also need to notify the RTA in writing of the QCAT application. If no QCAT application is lodged within the correct time frame, the RTA will pay the bond as directed on the Refund of rental bond form.