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Tenants: what to do at the end of your tenancy

6 November 2017

Photo: Kemp House, Kerikeri by russellstreet

If your tenancy is coming to an end soon, it’s important that you tie up all the loose ends. Follow our simple steps to make sure that your move out is as smooth as possible.

1. Conduct a final property inspection report

You and the landlord should conduct a final property inspection report at the end of the tenancy. This allows you to compare the current state of the property to the original condition. Having an accurate record of the condition of the property helps if there are any disputes over costs for repairing damage or how the bond should be refunded.

You should use the myRent Property Inspection Report for the final inspection.

2. Leave the property as you found it

As a tenant, you should try to leave the property in a condition as close as possible to how you found it. Refer to the property inspection reports to help with this.


Clean the property to a reasonable standard, especially to remove any uncleanliness you have caused.

Check outside areas

Check the gardens or any outside areas to make sure they are clear of any mess, especially if you have caused the mess.

Dispose of rubbish

Take any rubbish with you or dispose of it. Do not leave rubbish at the premises.

Alterations and additions

Remove any alterations or additions you have made to the property, unless removal would cause damage to the property.

Fix anything you broke

Fix anything that you broke (or agree to compensate the landlord for fixing it).

Replace anything missing

Replace anything missing (or agree to compensate the landlord for replacing it).

3. Remind any flatmates or sub-tenants when they need to move out

If you have any flatmates or sub-tenants, you will need to remind them to move out before the end of your agreement, unless the landlord has agreed to allow them to stay on as tenants.

If you are a head-tenant to sub-tenants, you have the same obligations as a landlord. This means you must comply with the relevant procedures and notice periods for ending a tenancy.

4. Get the bond refunded

You and the landlord should agree on how the bond will be refunded at the end of the tenancy. If you have not caused any damage to the property and there is no rent overdue, then you will generally be entitled to a full refund of the bond.

Fill out bond refund form and submit it with Tenancy Services. Read more about refunding the bond.

5. Hand back the keys

Make sure you give the landlord all the keys to the property at end of the tenancy.

6. Make the last rent payment

Make sure that you pay rent up until the end of the tenancy. If you’re paying via automated direct debit, make sure you cancel the payments after the last payment. Alternatively, if you are moving to a new tenancy run through myRent, alter the payment amount and payment reference number and restart payments from the beginning of that tenancy.

7. Communicate when you’re moving out

Tell the landlord what day you are moving out, if that day is before the day the tenancy terminates. This is especially important if the landlord wants to conduct any repairs or cleaning, or show potential new tenants around the property.

You must continue to pay rent for the period until the tenancy ends, even if you move out earlier.

8. Make sure you take all your possessions but leave behind goods supplied with property

You should be careful to remove all your possessions before the tenancy ends. It’s a good idea to arrange removalists ahead of time to ensure all your belongings are removed in time.

Be careful that you only take your own possessions. You should not take any goods supplied by the landlord with the property.

If you have pets or young children, it’s often a good idea to leave them with a friend or relative on the day you move out to save hassle and keep them safe.

9. Redirect or cancel utilities, services and mail to the property

Any services or utilities in your name should either be cancelled or redirected to the new property. This may include:

  • Mail
  • Electricity
  • Phone / internet
  • Satellite Pay TV
  • Water / sewerage

10. Change address on government forms and official documents

You should also change your address with government authorities and on official documents and forms, including:

  • Voting registration
  • Licences
  • Tax
  • Banks
  • Employers
  • University
  • Doctors / vets
  • Any other government or official services and forms

The information contained in this article is exclusively for promotional purposes. It does not in any way constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as the basis for any legal action or contractual dealings. The information is not, and does not attempt to be, a comprehensive account of the relevant law in New Zealand. If you require legal advice you should seek independent legal counsel. does not accept any liability that may arise from the use of this information.

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