Most holiday parks require final cleaning: after the holiday, the landlord will arrange the cleaning of the rented holiday home/bungalow or mobile home. In most cases the final cleaning is paid in advance, plus a deposit. Sometimes you can also choose to clean the holiday home yourself and no cleaning costs have to be paid. What is the legal situation if the deposit is not refunded?
Final cleaning: do it yourself or have it done?
The final cleaning is a mandatory cleaning for every holiday home. The guests who rent the house after you also want to stay in a clean holiday home. In most cases, final cleaning is mandatory: the landlord provides the cleaners and the tenant pays the cleaning costs. For most holiday guests it is nice that the final cleaning is arranged: most people are already tired of packing all the things and do not feel the need to have to clean the house again. However, people are often asked to leave the house broom clean. This means that no waste is allowed to lie around and the house is left in reasonable condition. If you want to save on final cleaning costs, you can sometimes choose to do the cleaning yourself. The holiday home must then be neatly cleaned, and that is more than just broom clean. The kitchen must be free of stains, the bathroom must be clean, as well as the toilet, the refrigerator must be empty and clean, beds must be taken down, floors swept or vacuumed, dust removed, etc. Anyone who does this properly will usually not receive a bill afterwards. In many cases, an employee of the holiday park will come to check the home. If he approves it, the tenant no longer has to do anything.
Pay and refund deposit
Deposit is requested by the landlord to ensure that any additional costs must be paid by the landlord. The amount may vary, but in most cases it will be around 100 euros. The landlord may deduct damages or additional costs from the deposit. The remaining amount will be transferred by the landlord to the tenant within a certain period. The holiday park is obliged to indicate in advance for which items extra costs may be charged. These are often the following:
- Damage or disappearance of inventory or deliberately caused damage to the home itself.
- An unemptied refrigerator.
- Dishes that are still there.
- An unemptied fireplace.
- Garbage in the home.
- Presence of pets that has not been reported in advance.
- Fleas or other parasites caused by pets.
- Furniture that has been moved.
- Uncollected bed linen.
To prevent the deposit from being refunded or only being partially refunded, it is important to leave the house tidy and to check all matters again. It is also wise to check the inventory for damage and presence immediately upon arrival. If items are missing or broken, please report this to reception as soon as possible. Even if something breaks in between, it is important to report this. The holiday park will usually quickly provide replacement goods.
Legal: deposit is non-refundable
If the holiday park does not refund the deposit, it must state clearly and in writing why this is not done. Additional cleaning costs may reasonably be deducted from the deposit. Damage or lost inventory may also be deducted from the deposit. The holiday park must check the holiday home for inventory in the tenant’s presence before the tenant’s departure. If the holiday park fails to do this, it becomes difficult for the landlord to hold the holiday guest liable for damage or missing goods. After all, the damage or loss of goods can also have occurred afterwards, for example by an employee or an unauthorized person. If no final inspection has been carried out by the holiday park, the landlord must immediately inform the tenant in writing in the event of damage or otherwise for which he expects additional costs. The tenant can choose to agree if he believes that damage or disappearance is actually his fault. However, if the tenant believes that this is not the case, he or she may refuse to pay for the damage. An amount outside the deposit can be refused, but the deposit can also be reclaimed. In principle, an attempt can be made to resolve this problem mutually by sending a registered letter to the holiday park / landlord of the holiday home. The landlord must be offered a reasonable period to refund the amount. Reasonable is within two to three weeks. If the landlord does not respond or agree, a collection agency can be engaged by the tenant/holiday guest. This person can hand over the matter. A collection agency based on ‘no cure no pay’ does not charge any costs to the landlord. The person who has to pay also pays the costs for the collection agency. Sometimes it is necessary to engage a lawyer. An old saying goes: ‘he who litigates about a cow matters one’. This means that litigation costs a lot, even if the other party has to pay the legal costs. Therefore, do not sue over a small matter. Sometimes it is better to leave the matter alone when it concerns a small amount and ignore this holiday park.