Last Updated on September 25, 2022 by
Each landlord has their own rules for leaving furniture in the house when moving out. Your lease agreement often states what happens to furniture and other stuff you leave behind. Your landlord will keep them for some time, and after this period lapses, they can dispose of the items.
Leaving furniture when moving out can be intentional, or in other occurrences, the tenant may be unsure whether it is right or wrong to leave furniture. As a landlord, you will also be in a state where you are unsure of the best action to take. This article looks at what will happen if you leave furniture in an apartment, the frequently asked questions on whether it is illegal to leave furniture when moving out, and what to do as landlords if a tenant moves out and leaves furniture in the house. Keep reading!
As a tenant who is unsure of what to do, it is advised to communicate with the landlord on the way forward to avoid inconveniences. Otherwise, it will also be quite reasonable to go through the lease agreement to check on the correct procedure or measure to take.
What Happens When A Tenant Leaves Furniture In A House When Moving Out?
If the tenant had already communicated and reached an agreement with the landlord before leaving furniture, the furniture would be safe. The landlord will store the furniture, but the tenant will incur any costs. The landlord is restricted from taking a tenant’s furniture as theirs unless a Tenant fails to communicate within the grace period given. It is against the rules for a landlord to take any action unless they are permitted.
Tips On What To Do If A Tenant Leaves Furniture In A House When Moving Out.
If it is stated in the lease that the tenant is required to leave the house in its original condition, then it will be illegal for the tenant to leave any form of furniture in the house. In other terms, the instructions on the lease may not have been explained or covered if the tenant is allowed or not allowed to leave furniture. As a landlord, the following steps will help to handle this matter.
1. Inspect The House On The Completion Of A Lease
This will help you determine and take an inventory of the number, size, and types of furniture left behind by the tenant. Photos can also come in handy as a sign of proof, together with the necessary documentation.
2. Determine Why The Tenant Left
This step comes in when the landlord has walked through the house and has found some left furniture. There are three main explanations as to why a tenant left the house:
1. The Ending Of A Lease Or A Termination Notice By The Tenant
In this state, the landlord is free to handle the furniture in any way as long as the tenant has communicated that they have permanently left the house.
2. The Landlord Gave The Tenant A Termination Notice
Here, the landlord is also free to handle the furniture as long as communication is made.
3. The Tenant Is Evicted/ Disappearance Of The Tenant
In matters relating to eviction, the landlord has no right whatsoever to take the handling of the property into their hands. Therefore, it is advised that the landlord should seek Local Law Enforcement Management to know the way forward. Documentation is also required.
3. Secure Storage
In an encounter where a new tenant is required to move into the house, it is advised that as the landlord, you should make sure the furniture is securely stored even if the tenant has communicated. You can decide to use your garage or get a safe storage unit. It is also essential to witness, especially a close neighbor when moving the furniture to the desired storage area. It is also essential to record all the expenses used during the moving of the furniture.
4. Contact The Tenant
There are two main reasons for contacting the Tenant: The first reason is a case where a new tenant wants to move into the house immediately; the landlord can contact the tenant to know when the furniture will be cleared. The second way is when no tenant moves into the house, but the landlord wants the house cleared.
The tenant can also be contacted to be notified of the moving of the furniture, where they are stored, the expenses and the price or fee of storage, and the maximum storage time.
If the tenant does not communicate after the designated time, the landlord is allowed to either sell, keep, donate, or trash them as long as all the rules or laws have been followed.
As a landlord, you are advised to have an abandoned furniture clause in the lease agreement to avoid future inconveniences. The clause should include:
1. What will be considered an abandoned furniture
2. How long you will be able to keep the furniture under storage following property and personal laws
3. How much the tenant will be required to pay as the disposal or storage fee
4. How do you expect to receive the disposal or furniture storage fee
5. What measures you will take if the tenant does not cooperate
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is It Illegal To Leave Furniture In A House When Moving Out?
This will depend on the agreement between the tenant and the landlord. If it is against the lease agreement, the tenant should sue no form of furniture left in the house when moving out. If uncertain, communication with the landlord should be made.
2. What Will Happen If I Leave Furniture In The House When Moving Out?
The landlord may have to report you against the lease agreement. You will be charged as it is against the law. If there was no instance where there was any law forbidding leaving furniture when moving out, then you should communicate with the landlord to avoid mishandling of the furniture if you had not abandoned them in the first place.
3. Can You Leave Furniture In A House When You Move Out?
This depends on whether it is right or wrong and whether you have had prior communication with the landlord. If you intend to leave furniture, make sure it is not against the lease agreement rules.
4. Can You Leave Unneeded Furniture In A House When
Yes, you can. This is if you are willing to pay the total cost of disposal, removal, and storage fee. Transportation costs may also come in. As long as you will not need the furniture in the future and you have already communicated with the landlord and are willing to take up the costs, you are very safe.
5. What Are Some Of The Consequences Of Leaving Furniture In A House When Moving Out?
1. Furniture destruction when moving the furniture to a storage unit
2. Additional costs such as transportation, removal and disposal costs, and even storage costs
3. Charges if you would have gone against the lease agreement laws where you are prohibited from leaving any form of furniture in the house
4. Loss of some of the furniture when they are being transported to the storage unit
As a landlord, you may be uncertain about the actions to take once the furniture has been left in your house. It is better to seek confirmation from the tenant before taking any other action. It is also advisable that you go through the lease laws to be sure of the steps you will have to take. When moving out, it is essential to go through the lease agreement to know if it is legal or illegal to leave needed or unneeded furniture in the house. If you are still unsure what to do, it is advised that you communicate with the landlord on the way forward. If you are still unsure, it is better to go through the state laws for further guidance. Many avoidable charges and costs can come with leaving the furniture in the house, and it is, therefore, better for the tenant to be sure. If the tips mentioned above are followed, you are assured to be on the safer side either as a tenant or landlord.