Landlords who rent out their accommodation must pay particular attention to the inventory of fixtures, a document to be attached to the lease contract and which aims to protect both parties.
Are you about to sign a lease contract with your new tenant? The inventory of fixtures is an essential step to protect your property against possible disasters. It must comply with precise rules.
What is the purpose of the inventory of fixtures?
The inventory of fixtures is a document that describes the condition and operation of the equipment that the tenant has at his disposal under the rental contract. A first inventory of fixtures must be drawn up on entering the accommodation and a second one on leaving in order to note its evolution during the duration of the lease. In accordance with the Alur law of 1st June 2016, the inventory of fixtures is compulsory and must be attached to the lease contract in as many copies as there are parties.
More specifically, this document enables the lessor to make a clear and precise comparison of the property between the time it is leased and the time it is returned. If any damage is noted on departure, the lessee may be required to repair the damage caused by paying restoration costs or losing his security deposit.
How to carry out the inventory of fixtures
Contrary to the rental contract, there is no official form to download to carry out the inventory of fixtures. The presentation is therefore free, as long as it is similar on entry and exit. The Alur law lists the mandatory mentions that these documents must contain. It must nevertheless be kept in mind that the more precise the inventory of fixtures is, the more the landlord will be able to assert his rights in the event of a subsequent dispute with the tenant. Many investors therefore entrust this task to a professional, such as a real estate agent. Websites such as Jelouebien, for example, also offer inventory of fixtures models.
In order to establish the inventory of fixtures, it is necessary to inspect the various rooms of the dwelling. Here are a few tips to make sure you don’t forget anything when the time comes:
- Inspect each room from floor to ceiling;
- check the operation of electrical outlets with the help of a tensiometer;
- open and close the joinery and interior doors;
- check the operation of faucets and drains;
- highlight stains, holes, tears, marks on walls, floors and ceilings by taking pictures;
- carefully record the reading of water, gas and electricity meters.
What to do in case of disagreement with the tenant?
The exit inventory of fixtures allows the owner to check that the tenant has respected his obligations in terms of maintenance and repairs. It is in principle established jointly and amicably between the two parties.
In the event of a dispute over the conclusion of this document, it is preferable to find an amicable solution before taking legal action, which could be long and costly. The tenant who disputes the inventory of fixtures must first send a registered letter to the landlord detailing the points of disagreement and asking him to make another one free of charge. If the conflict persists or if the landlord does not reply, it is possible to refer the matter to a conciliator at the town hall. If this professional is not in a position to render a judgement or impose a decision on the parties, he can nevertheless encourage the landlord to draw up a new inventory of fixtures. As with recourse to a legal mediator, the referral to the departmental conciliation commission is free of charge and can enable an exchange of views with the landlord to find a solution to the conflict.
If the consultation does not succeed, it becomes necessary to initiate legal proceedings. For amounts of less than 4,000 euros, referral to the Tribunal d’instance by registered letter addressed to the registry is sufficient. This letter should be accompanied by all relevant supporting documents (evidence of damage, witness statements, etc.). For amounts exceeding EUR 4 000, the use of a bailiff is compulsory. In this situation, the costs are shared equally between the lessor and the tenant, regardless of which party initiates the procedure.
Thus, to prevent any subsequent litigation, it is sometimes preferable for the tenant and the landlord to jointly or unilaterally mandate a bailiff to carry out an amicable inventory of fixtures.
All our information is generic in nature. It does not take into account your personal situation and does not in any way constitute personalised recommendations with a view to carrying out transactions and cannot be assimilated to a financial investment advice service, nor to any incentive whatsoever to buy or sell financial instruments.