How do you find quality tenants?
We meet with all prospective tenants onsite and in person, we start qualifying them from the first contact. Once they have submitted an application we will contact the current employer in person and then also request written confirmation from them and will match this information to their provided payslips and rental application. We also speak to not only their current property manager, but endeavour to get their previous rental history also to give a better picture of the type of tenants they are. We look at their rental ledgers to see how they pay rent and to make sure that ongoing arrears are not evident.
All applicants are checked on the TICA database which covers Australia and New Zealand. Anyone who has defaulted on a previous tenancy in the last few years will be listed here and these tenants will automatically be disregarded.
We make sure we get 100 points of ID and where they have previously owned property we verify these details too. In short we get as much information and actually speak to the relevant people as you can get much more information from people directly then you can from a simple written form.
You will be informed of all applications and we will give our recommendations to you for each individual tenancy so you can make an informed decision.
Does my managing agent need to have a street presence in order to be effective?
In this age of technology 99% of prospective tenants will be looking online for their next rental property. We have a great presence on www.realestate.com.au and www.domain.com.au and links from both go back to our own website which has all the relevant tenant information, tenancy application forms, emergency contact information that they can access 24 hours a day. We also have great For Rent signs out for each of our available properties to catch passing traffic in that area and to better promote your property.
We are finding that a lot of tenants have a bad taste from their previous rental experience and also appreciate the extra service that we can provide, being a boutique agency. We have the time and drive to make a connection with prospective tenants from the first meeting.
How often do you inspect the property during the tenancy?
We will inspect the property within the first 8-10 weeks of a new tenancy – this ensures that any issues are quickly identified and rectified. We will then inspect every 12-13 weeks thereafter for the duration of the tenancy. Tenants are given as much notice as possible for the upcoming inspection and reminders are also sent out 1-2 days prior.
Do I need Landlords Insurance?
While it is not compulsory to have landlord insurance on your property, however, as property specialists, it’s our expert recommendation that every investment property owner has a specific landlord insurance policy in place for their property.
Landlord Insurance protects you in the event of a tenant not paying rent, departing the property early or damaging the property. It also includes public liability and limited cover for contents (e.g. floor coverings, curtains).
While there are plenty of options out there, we suggest choosing very carefully. Many policies provided by the major banks are worthless! Be sure to look at how well a policy can cover unpaid rent, liability claims, damage to contents and extreme weather, and most importantly have a look at the excess conditions.
Can I charge my tenants for water?
If your property is individually metered, then the short answer is yes! If your property has been checked by a licenced plumber and meets a 3 star wells rating and deemed to be water efficient then you can charge the tenants 100% of the water use at the property.
If not, then you are allowed to pass on what is deemed to be a reasonable amount of water, usually around anything over 40kl per quarter. If we pay your water accounts for you, then we will also automatically on charge your tenants at the applicable rate for you. Call us for more information.
My property has a pool, who is responsible to maintain it?
We strongly suggest that you add into the rent a monthly pool service, this will ensure that you get regular reports on the condition of the pool and know that it is being well looked after – pool equipment is expensive and the last thing you need to pay for! The tenants will pay for the ongoing chemicals and the upkeep of the pool between services – all written into their lease so there is no question on this. The tenants also need to keep the pool topped up with water, if the property is water efficient this is at their cost too.
Who is responsible for pest control?
It depends on the cause and nature of the pests – The landlord is responsible for making sure the property is well maintained and fit to live in as per the general tenancy agreement. For example: If there is a rodent issue as there is a water way close by then the landlord will be asked to lay baits to keep them under control. If the tenants are not securing their rubbish and they have a cockroach issue – they will be asked to change their habits and pay for the pest control.
It is highly recommended that landlords have a yearly termite inspection and these will also come with recommendations on the general state and if a pest control is required, and what the general cause may be.
My property needs maintenance, who do you use?
We have a team of tradespeople on call who we have used for our own properties for years – so we know and trust the work they do is to a very high standard. They are all licenced and we have their public liability details on file. We are also happy to arrange repairs and maintenance through your preferred tradespeople too.
You will be notified of all maintenance promptly - from a loose door handle to major storm damage as we understand and also agree that your property needs to be well maintained. Our team will work with you to ensure repairs are carried quickly and efficiently.
Urgent repairs, regardless of cost maybe required by law to be acted upon immediately as legislated in the Residential Tenancies Act. We will endeavour to reach you prior to carrying out any works but may have to proceed in absence of your instructions. We will always act in your best interest in regards to previous instructions received and also to protect your investment.
What happens if my tenants are in rent arrears?
We have a very strict rent arrears policy and do convey this to our tenants from the very start of the tenancy process. We check our arrears daily from just 1 day late and our tenants are notified of the same. If they still do not pay the rent, after 8 days (minimum legal requirement) they are issued with a Notice to Remedy Breach which is a permanent park on their tenant file, giving them 7 days’ notice to rectify – if the rent remains unpaid then a Notice to Leave is hand delivered to the property giving them a further 7 days to vacate.
You, as the landlord will be notified of every step in the process and all available legal options will be explained to you at the time.
What happens when my tenant is vacating?
All tenants are required to give a minimum of 14 days written notice that they plan to move out at any time. We do send our leases out 2 months prior to the end date of a fixed tenancy and do request where possible as much notice from our tenants in order to minimise any vacancy period for you.
If the tenants need to break a fixed term agreement for any reason they do need your permission to do so, and you must act reasonably. They will be responsible for the re-letting costs associated with finding a new tenant, including the rent to the day before a new tenant is found and a break lease fee, which is the let fee you would normally pay for a new tenant.
At this time we will assess the current market for your property and be in touch with a marketing plan for your approval. We will hold open inspections at times to suit the prospective tenants and will keep you in touch throughout the entire process.
How often do I receive statements?
You can chose to receive statements, and your rent disbursement, either fortnightly or monthly. Disbursements will be run on the 15th of each month (or working day prior to the 15th) and also on the 1st working day of the month for the month prior. You will receive emailed statements with a breakdown of the income and expenditure and copies of any relevant invoices.
Please note we can only disburse the funds that we are actually holding, for example if your tenants are paid well in advance and chose to only pay 1 week rent in a 2 week period this, minus any fees, is what will be released for you. Accordingly, if your tenants have paid rent well in advance, all of these funds will also be released to you at the next disbursement.
How do I change agents?
This part is easy! We will meet with you to discuss your needs and should you be happy to proceed you will need to sign a PO Form 6, which is the management agreement to enlist our services. We will also get you to sign a request for your current agent giving notice to terminate your current arrangement which we can send on your behalf. We will then arrange to collect your property information directly from the other agent when the notice period has expired (usually around 30 days) so you will not have to speak to them, or go back to the office.
The current tenants will be protected by their lease agreement and these details will not change, and we will be in touch with them directly to explain this to them. We will also arrange a time to meet them and inspect the property on takeover and a full report will be sent to you directly.
If you have any further questions please do let us know, we are happy to make a time to chat with you about your individual needs. Call us on 07 3491 2000, or send a direct email to email@example.com. We look forward to hearing from you!