Male carrying black bag.

Have a clear out with Junkbusters

Run by the Community Wardens in partnership with the University of Birmingham, Junkbusters allows you to donate your unwanted items at the end of the year without cluttering up the streets.

You can request donation bags from British Heart Foundation to be delivered to your door and volunteers will pick up when they’re full.

You can also donate sealed, non-perishable food items to the B30 Foodbank which will have a stall set up in Selly Oak on Junkbusters collection days. Find out what can and can’t be donated on the B30 website.

Clean from top to bottom

Get some serious cleaning supplies and grab your rubber gloves – over the year, your property will inevitably have built up some mess and dirt that will need cleaning away if you want to keep your deposit. Share these jobs out among everyone, even if some people are leaving before others, to make sure everybody does their fair share.

Student cleaning house.
Small Garden

Check the garden

A lot of contracts insist that the garden is returned in the state it was given. Double check this and make sure when you sign your contract that the proper equipment to maintain the garden is provided.

If it is, make sure you use it! If it isn’t then you will still be responsible and may have to borrow equipment or hire a gardener.

Check your original inventory

Go back through the original inventory document and make sure you make honest notes about anything that has been damaged, replaced, or otherwise changed during your time in the property. You may not be able to avoid some deposit deductions, but it’s better to have your own record (don’t forget to take lots of pictures).

Woman looking at laptop and book.
Top view on a student with bunch of bills

Cancel your bills and broadband

Using your meter readings, let your utility and broadband companies know that you are moving address. You can close the account completely and open a new one in your new home, or you can simply let them know that you are moving and that you wish to transfer the account.

Don’t forget any accounts that you share with your housemates, such as streaming services, your TV license, or subscription boxes. If you’re changing who you live with, make sure any credit is split evenly before you go your separate ways.

Change your address for important letters

You can do this manually or through the Post Office – note that the Post Office charge a small fee, but will capture all letters going to your old address and redirect them for you while you change the address on all your various accounts.

Change of address letter
Keys being handed over

Lock up and return the keys

Always make sure windows and doors are secured before you leave and that you’ve done one final look for belongings and cleanliness. You should give back the keys on time, at the time and on the date agreed with the landlord or lettings agent (this may be in your contract, or in your moving out instructions).

And that’s it! Congratulations, you have successfully navigated the private housing sector.

There’s a chance that you’ll now need to do it all over again for your next student home. Just head back to ‘Looking for your new home’.