Leaving items in our flat

We are moving out of our flat (which has been our home since we bought it 12 years ago) and will be renting it out long term. We will be staying with family for a year so we would like to minimise the amount of stuff we have to put in storage. We are leaving the washing machine, dishwasher and fridge freezer of course. Ideally we would leave other items that are not worth storing but are a shame not to use such as microwave, kettle, toaster, blender etc. Estate agents have advised against this though? I would also like to have a cleaner clean the flat a couple of times a month (we will pay) - to make sure that the flat is kept clean and things like the dishwasher filter is cleaned, washing machine is maintained etc. Is that something anyone else has done? Thanks!

no one will look after the place like you have. Be prepared to be disapointed. Whether a tenant will agree to a cleaner will remain to be seen

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So, some things to consider.

Anything you leave in the flat you should be prepared to be damaged or gone when the tenants move out. Also, you need to PET test all appliances you leave.

There is also a problem if something breaks. So either you leave it in the flat for tenants as part of their tenancy, which means you need to replace or fix when broken. i.e. the microwave breaks - you need to replace it as it was part of the furnishings

The other way is to gift the items to the tenants, i.e. they are theirs and you don’t have to repair them. The flip side is - they’re not yours any more.

As for the cleaner - it’s most likely an unnecessary cost. Don’t expect the tenant to contribute towards it. They should clean the flat and you can do inspections to make sure it is in a good state.

You must remember that you can’t expect tenants to clean the flat as maticilously as yourself.

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We provide furnished accommodation.

It is a personal choice. Estate agents are not keen as if they are not used it to it is an extra headache for them. Student estate agents are used to dealing with furnished accommodation so they don’t object.

You may want to charge extra as you are providing more facilities.
If you want to go ahead with this make sure you inventory everything including the date it was purchased.
Date stamp all photographs.
Be thorough with your inventory.
I think providing a cleaner is a great idea. Keeping the house clean regularly ensures less wear and tear.
HMO provide cleaners . You could accommodate the cost in the rent .
We provide furnished accommodation and go in every few months to deal with maintenance issues ( filters, fans etc).
We do ask the tenants wash carpets, windows and oven at least once a year.
If you provide electrical items you must PAT test them annually.
You cannot gift electrical items in the private rental sector, only in social housing. You will be liable for repair or replacement ( like for like).

As everyone has written be prepared for damages ( small or large). If there are deductions beyond the deposit I would advise going through mcol rather than dispute resolution with your deposit holder if it comes to that.

If it were my home, though, I am not sure I would leave my furniture in situ, especially if it has sentimental value.

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Professionals are usually responsible. You may want to think twice if children and or pets are involved and reflect that in your rent ( then you are significantly more likely to get damages).