You can maximise the likelihood of getting your bond back when you move out of a rental property by doing the following…
Before you move in
Complete the condition report if you have one, noting absolutely every single dirty or broken thing in the house, and email yourself and the landlord clear photos of each of these. Whatever isn’t noted on the condition report will become your responsibility, regardless of whether you broke or dirtied it. If you don’t get a condition report, it is even more important to send those photos. Keep a receipt of any money you have paid including a bond or deposit.
During your stay
Email (written) your landlord about any repairs. The NSW Tenant’s Union has a factsheet outlining your rights and responsibilities around repairs. You are allowed “fair wear and tear” so don’t be scared to report things.
When you move out
You need to leave the home in the same condition, minus fair wear and tear, as when you moved in. You will not be considered as having moved out, until the landlord gets the keys back. When the landlord inspects the property, they may note damage, that was not in the incoming condition report, or cleaning that you will be responsible for paying for. If you believe you have not been treated fairly, contact an SRC Caseworker to find out what your options are.
More information: Accomodation Checklist