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FAQs from landlords

25 November 2015 Daniel Bligh

With property management, every landlord or property investor is unique and we like to explore what works best, together.

 

Below are some Frequently Asked Questions we encounter on a daily basis. They are separated with regards to ‘Leasing’ and 'Property Management’. 

  1. LEASING

What type of marketing do you use?

  • The Internet – 70 per cent of our enquiry comes from domain.com.au, 25 per cent from realestate.com.au and the remainder from social media – Facebook (we have a dedicated Facebook page, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Gumtree, Google +) and other real estate portal websites such as rentfind.com.au, realestateview and myhome.com.au
  • Existing database – over 4,000 contacts
  • Newsletter – we run a periodic newsletter that is sent to relocation agents, current and past clients, buyers agents and existing tenants.
  • Print – we think this an outdated, unnecessary and an expensive exercise! There may be some unique circumstances required for high-end properties, but the internet for ROI is the place to be.
  • Signboard – this is your 24/7 street signage and is great for busy streets and locals walking by.

What rent will my property get?

This will depend on a variety of factors, including the following:

  • Comparable properties in the building or street.
  • Supply and demand in an area.
  • Climate conditions (beachside suburbs are stronger in summer).
  • Furnished/unfurnished possibilities.
  • Length of the term offered.
  • Age of the property and its current condition.
  • An owner’s willingness to accept market conditions.

How long will it take to lease out my property?

  • Normally within 1-4 weeks. It will come down to three main factors – presentation, price and the accurate advice from your agent.
  • Presentationcan be dictated by you, the owner. If tenants are already in place, a good relationship with them will go a long way to ensuring this is facilitated.
  • Price– knowing the market and using comparable rents in the local area to adjudicate the price will minimise vacancy period without compromising your bottom dollar.
  • Advice– don’t be sold on agents looking to win your business with the promise of high returns. Make sure you listen to their recommendations, comparable properties that have recently leased in the area and acknowledge market feedback when it comes in.

 What are your fees and charges?

 We have three options for our clients! Ranging from 5.0 per cent plus GST to 7.0 per cent plus GST (all inclusive); we are sure you will find a package that suits your needs.

Are there any other fees and charges?

Everything you see in the packages is inclusive. Unlike other agencies, we don’t charge for postage and administration fees. We are flexible in our approach and are happy to listen to what you are after.

Can we do a unique lease term?

Yes. Sometimes circumstances might be appropriate for a unique term, say five months, nine months or 15 months. This can all be negotiated. We recommend leases to end in the summer months (especially in beachside suburbs) to put yourself in a stronger position to negotiate (supply vs. demand is always strong between spring and summer). Please be mindful that your ideal lease term is not always ideal for the prospective tenant, and this may affect the rental return.

  1. PROPERTY MANAGEMENT

What tradespeople do you use?

We have experienced, licenced and insured tradespeople. We have 2-3 for each category as well. The most commonly used are handyman, electricians and plumbers. If you have existing relationships with any tradespeople, please let us know and we are happy to use them on your behalf (if they meet the before-mentioned criteria).

How many times will you check to see if the property is being looked after?

Depending on your package chosen, we inspect 1, 2 or 3 times per year. Legally four times is the maximum amount of times you are allowed to inspect per year in NSW. If we are unhappy with the tenant’s state of the presentation, we will fit in another inspection to report back.

How do you report back after you have inspected the property?

As part of our service, we prepare a comprehensive document to our clients, which includes a snapshot of the tenancy and the property. We can make recommendations and keep you thoroughly informed on the state of the tenancy and your investment. All this, of course, with numerous photographs (up to 300).

Will you pay all my bills on my behalf?

Yes. Please provide your water meter number and any relevant strata details for us to communicate with. We will also contact your local council to inform them that we will be managing your property.

Will you consult me on expenditure?

After we have discussed terms for managing your property, we provide an information sheet for you to fill out with any relevant details and questions about how you like to be communicated with. In this document, you can set an upper limit of what we are permitted to spend money on your behalf for repairs and maintenance. Emergency repairs will be actioned ASAP through stipulations from the Office of Fair Trading.

Can I set an upper limit for repairs and maintenance?

Typically $300 or some are at $1,000. Depending on the level of work and the complexity required.

Should I take out landlord insurance?

We would always recommend it, yes. Please ask us for any preferred suppliers.

What happens if the rent is not paid on time?

We have a rental arrears process – in addition to our software that alerts us on a daily basis which tenants are in arrears.

When am I paid the rent?

Twice a month we pay out both our tradespeople, creditors and landlords.

What if we aren’t happy with the service?

We doubt it! But typically we require 30 days’ notice to terminate a managing agent agreement.

What if we want to move back in or stop renting it out?

We are required to give the tenants due notice. Depending whether it a fixed lease or month to month lease the time varies.

The minimum period of notice you can give the tenant to vacate is:

  • 14 days – if the tenant is 14 days or more behind with the rent or has committed some other breach of the tenancy agreement
  • 30 days – if the fixed term of the agreement is due to end.
  • 30 days – if the premises have been sold after the fixed term has ended, and vacant possession is required by the buyer under the terms of the sale contract.
  • 90 days – if the fixed term period has expired and no new agreement has been signed.

 Please look at Office of Fair Trading for further details.

 What else should a landlord look out for?

  • Undertaking a tax depreciation report – they can save you thousands of dollars over the course of your investment. Please ask for any preferred suppliers.
  • Is your home water efficient? You can get your tenants to pay for water usage if it is individually metered.

Lastly, we like to get our clients to fill out a ‘Landlord Checklist’ to ensure the marketing and management of their property are as smooth as possible. Our role is to ensure their investment properties are effectively looked after, appropriate communication is set in place so they are then able to relax.

FAQs from landlords
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Daniel serves as the managing director at elevate property group and is located in Sydney, Australia. elevate specialises in property management and service.

Prior to joining elevate, Daniel served in both property management and sales at BradfieldCleary Real Estate in Double Bay. 

Before real estate, Daniel worked in executive sales at Fairfax Media selling those annoying pop up ads online across their various websites! 

At the moment, Daniel is a tenant, a Landlord and a licenced real estate agent.

 

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