Turning In Your Keys
February 13, 2015
As we approach moving season, we wanted to take some time to address the importance of turning in keys to your property manager upon vacating your apartment. This is always the final detail after all the packing, loading, transporting, cleaning, etc., but it’s a detail that is often thought of as “I’ll get to it when I get to it!” In reality, turning in keys is something that you should do before you make that final trip to the new place, or when you come back to clean the old place.
- It is important to know that you shouldn’t have copies of your apartment keys floating around. For example, most renters are given two sets of keys to their building/apartment. However, you may want additional sets to give to a parent, friend, dog sitter, etc. So, you may decide to head to a hardware store to have copies made. This is typically a violation of your lease as your manager did not issue those keys, and the originals are most likely stamped Do Not Copy. If you need additional sets of keys, always check with your manager so he/she can keep track of how many you were given.
- Upon vacating the apartment, your manager will ask for all the keys back. If you were given four sets at move-in, you will be required to turn in four sets at move-out. Well now you might be asking, “What if we lost a set?” In that case, the manager will be required to re-key the apartment. This is an expense that will fall back onto you, the renter, usually in the form of a security deposit deduction. It can range anywhere from $75-$150.
- Be sure you turn in your keys to a secure area, preferably to the manager personally or into a safe drop box. It is not advised that you leave your keys unattended by an office door, mail them back, or give them to someone else to hand in for you. In any of those situations keys can be stolen or lost. You can still be charged for the re-key despite your claims of “But I gave them to my neighbor to give to you!” or “I mailed them to you a week ago!” We encourage you to always follow up. A simple email to your manager letting them know you returned the keys and confirming they were received can save a big hassle, and big charges, later.
The McKenzie Apartment Company has secure-locked buildings for its residents and encourages all renters to keep good track of your garage door opener, apartment/building keys, including your mailbox key. In the event that you do lose a set of keys please inform the office immediately.