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Cleaning Up

A landlord is awarded compensation after a tenant left the house in a less than satisfactory state.


1 June 2021

The end of tenancies often brings ongoing issues around cleanliness and tidiness to the fore. When Faapouliaolelagi Niko left the Takanini rental she was inhabiting in a state not considered appropriate by property managers Barfoot and Thompson, they took her to the Tenancy Tribunal for compensation.

Photographic evidence revealed that the carpet (which was new at the beginning of the tenancy) was covered in stains. The tenant had failed to clean the oven, range hood, switches, laundry tub, and there was mould on the ceiling. They had also left rubbish inside the house.

The property managers were required to have professional steam cleaning undertaken on the carpet; an invoice was provided for the steam cleaning undertaken to remove the stains. Additionally, it took three hours of extra labour to clean the rest of the house.

There was also damage to the walls and ceiling in the lounge, kitchen and bathroom. The walls had been painted before the tenants moved in; but they had caused damage by using nails, furniture scraping, and there was a hole in the wall that the tenant had tried to repair.

A new oven was damaged by use of a product that was unsuitable. Adjudicator A Aiolupotea found in favour of the landlords, ordering a payment of $1,965.56 for carpet cleaning, general cleaning, stove repair, wall repairs, as well as rent arrears. After the bond reimbursement, the tenant was required to pay an extra $615.56.


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