Active and inquisitive tiny tenants can wrack up huge bills when it comes to household maintenance. Research reveals that each child has the potential to cause around £400 worth of damage before the age of three.
For the 1 million private renters in the UK with children, being more aware of these common pitfalls can help families protect more than £400 million in deposits and ensure a hassle-free transaction when it’s time to move.
Most common household damages caused by toddlers
These are the most common household damages caused by toddlers, and the average cost of repairs.
Ruined wallpaper or paintwork is the most common problem caused by artistic kids, with nearly half of parents having experienced damage to their walls by children. In some instances, this can be easily fixed with a quick lick of paint, but extensive damage to walls and wallpaper over the years can amount to a costly fee of £500 if contractors are needed.
Window damage is the least common, with only 4% of parents reporting broken windows at the hands of little ones. This is excellent news because they're also the most expensive item on the list: replacing a single window can cost up to £1,500!
Protecting your deposit
When it comes to protecting your deposit, knowing how to avoid some of the most common house damages caused by kids can help ensure a hassle-free transition when you do decide to move, but there are a few other things you can do:
- Insist on detailed snag lists when you move in and out of a property.
- Communicate maintenance issues to your property manager or landlord as soon as possible.
- Be open and transparent about any damage caused to the property.
Putting a few simple measures in place can help you avoid accidents and keep kids safe as they explore their environment:
- Buy washable crayons that can easily wipe off walls or furniture.
- Discourage riding bikes, skating or throwing a ball indoors.
- Secure furniture and TVs to walls with safety straps to stop them from toppling over.
- Discourage kids from climbing inside by making things more accessible on lower shelves.
- Neaten up and hide cords so they can't be pulled or tripped over.
Research shows adventurous or accident-prone kids can cause a surprising amount of damage. Hopefully, by being aware of some of the most common damages, parents can more easily prevent or avoid them and save some money in the process.
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Method: We used Direct Line data on the most common household breakages caused by children and analysed online stores and repair services across the internet to find out the price to fix or replace each item.