Summertime is moving time, and one of the things that stresses people out the most is turning that rented apartment or house back to the landlord. Fearing that last walk-through, hoping and praying he finds nothing needing to be fixed or deducted from the deposit.
We have all been there, pictures and shelves come off the walls leaving big, ugly holes in the walls. That big Schrank was sitting too close to the wall causing it to grow some mold. The cat scratched the wallpaper….
First off, be aware that you can fix most things on your own without ever having to tell your landlord. Or if you don't have the time or skills, you can hire someone and shop around for estimates. Having those little damages fixed before the walk-through will make the whole ordeal much less stressful.
Here are some quick fixes for common issues:
Holes in the walls from pictures or shelves
Most home improvement shops offer little tubs or tubes with putty to fill holes. I like to use Moltofill. If you have white walls, have a little white paint handy.
Remove your nail or screw, make sure if there is a dowel in the wall that you either remove it or push it into the wall so nothing sticks out. Once the hole is prepped, fill the hole with the putty. Use your finger or a spatula to remove any excess putty and let it dry. Sometimes you will have to add a little more of the putty in a second sitting, but that's fine. Once it is dry, you can paint or wallpaper right over it.
Scratches or missing wallpaper
Most rentals have wallpapered walls, and the most popular wallpaper for landlords is a paper/woodchip combination called Raufasertapete. It's a pain to remove, but very versatile and very easily fixed when damaged. Plus it can be painted over and over.
If you have that wallpaper and it's needing a fix, head over to the hardware store. There you can find liquid Raufaser. That is a bucket of paint that will resemble that wallpaper once applied on the wall.
So clean up your damaged spot, remove paper bits that may be sticking out and patch the spots with the paint. Be aware, this will only work on small patches; if you remove large sections it won't look right.
If you have big sections that you need redone, your best bet is to remove the wallpaper and re-wallpaper. If the other walls are still good, you just remove the old wallpaper off the one wall and put new wallpaper up. Let it dry and repaint.
To remove the old stuff, soak it in warm soapy water and use a spatula to carefully scrape it off.
Fixing small mold spots
Again, the place to be for supplies is your local hardware store. You will need to look for Schimmel und Flecken Isolierweis (mold whiteout spray); you will also need to replace the wallpaper and, if needed, paint over it.
To prep your wall, remove all wallpaper of the affected area. Wash the wall off, bleach or a vinegar cleaner works great for that. Make sure all the mold is washed off and let it dry completely. Once your wall is dry, shake up the mold spray and evenly apply it over the area that had the mold spots. Let it dry again.
Once your wall is dry, double check to make sure all your spots are gone. Now you can wallpaper or paint your wall just like the rest of the room.
Oil stains in the garage
Don’t worry, if your car or lawnmower leaked oil in the garage or your parking area. That can be easily cleaned up, too. Remove any oil spills by spreading kitty litter over the stain. Let it sit over night and then sweep it up. Buy a bottle or two of Ölfleckentferner (oil stain remover) depending on the size of the stain, and coat the area well. Depending on the instructions, you may have to let it sit for a while. Once dry you can sweep it off. Repeat as needed.
A neat and cut yard is also easy to do and something that pleases a landlord. Be sure to report any damages to your renters insurance for reimbursement; you do, after all, pay that for a reason.
As soon as you start packing, look for things that need fixing and start a list. Once your household goods are picked up, it's easiest to do a final walk-through to look for damages or little things that you may have missed.
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