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Inspection report and inventory check

At the beginning or end of the lease, an inspection report is drawn up in the presence of both parties, who sign it on the spot. The tenant and the landlord will receive a copy. For a furnished apartment, a detailed inventory must be prepared. The initial inspection document forms an integral part of the lease.

Prior inspection report

Before the date on which the premises are to be vacated, the property management company meets the tenant so that a prior inspection can take place. At this time, the tenant is informed of their responsibilities and the arrangements for the final inspection, and receives a checklist so that they can be better prepared for it.

Meter readings

Readings are taken from the electricity, water and gas (or fuel oil) meters so that the tenant can be billed for the exact quantity they have used. If meters cannot be accessed, SIG (Services Industriels de Genève) must be contacted beforehand so that a technician can come and read the meter on the date of the final inspection. To avoid the electricity and gas being cut off, they must not be cancelled. The property management company will communicate the readings, the new address of the outgoing tenant and the contact details of the new tenant to SIG.

Identification of defects

When an initial or final inspection is made, the apartment, villa or premises must be presented perfectly clean and completely empty. The lawn, hedges and other plants must be maintained and trimmed. Any defects or damage must be noted in the inspection report. Villa tenants must provide the property management company with copies of the most recent invoices for maintenance (chimney-sweeping, cleaning of pipes and gutters, heating system maintenance, boiler descaling, maintenance of ventilation systems for Minergie villas).

Damage to be repaired

When a tenant moves out, they shall acknowledge any damage for which they are responsible, authorise the property management company to have the necessary repairs carried out, and undertake to reimburse it for the relevant invoices. Damage is usually covered by their compulsory civil liability insurance.

Return of keys

All keys, including duplicates, must be returned. If keys have been lost, the lock will be changed at the tenant’s expense. Keys to internal doors must be left in the door.

Smooth handovers are important

To prevent any misunderstandings or disputes, good preparation for the inspection is essential. When they move in, tenants appreciate not having to put up with the inconvenience of work, and when they move out, they are happy if the final statement of account can be drawn up immediately and their deposit repaid swiftly.

© Esther Lauber, Real Estate Trustee with Advanced Federal Diploma of Professional Education and Training, property manager


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