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Thread: Don't think about buying rental properties

  1. #1
    Wayne shoots while Di chats!
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    Don't think about buying rental properties

    How can tenants do so much damage? I have had houses for 27 years now, and have never wrecked a door, but holes in 4 of them? Domestic violence must be everywhere.

    Wayne and I are just back from 9 days of major reno's on a trashed rental house. Major Smoke damage (seems they did not know to close the Kent fire door ), so scrubbing, 3 coats paint throughout, new doors , major cleanup etc etc. We also took the opportunity to level floors, pull out the kitchen, tiled 3 rooms, floating floors and new carpets (the floors were wrecked, and now so are we!).

    It is looking great, but even though it was snowing about half an hour from us, we could not spare the time for photo's. So sad, because the snow clouds looked great from the verandah of the "torture house"

    Hopefully after a couple more weekends work should be over for a little while, if we can get decent tenants, and we can take some more photo's.

    Di
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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear of the damage to your property. Unfortunately, this is not uncommon. think about vetting the tenants carefully (references etc), get landlord's insurance (although this does not cover a lot of what you would expect it to so read the various available policies carefully), giving only shorter leases (which can continue on hold over) only if you are happy with the tenants, you can inspect your property every 3 months with proper notice - make sure you do that , be very particular about completing the "ingoing condition report" and take photos also to evidence the condition of the premises at the time the tenants go in (this may not prevent damage but the report is a requirement and it will also helpful to prove it later if necessary), ensure the bond is fully paid and lodged with renting Service(bond board), if you need to claim against a tenant for damage etc make sure your application is lodged in time as there is a time limit for doing this after the tenant has vacated. If damage is occurring during the tenancy that you become aware of, there are provisions in the law to apply to remove them even though the lease has some time left to run. Consult a good knowledgeable real estate agent for advice. Lastly, reward good tenants who look after the property in various available ways. These are just some of the things you can do to help the situation not to occur or to better manage it if it does. You should not rely on anything Mongo has suggested and you should get your own professional advice.
    Last edited by mongo; 30-07-2012 at 10:32am.
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    Ausphotography Regular leanneqld's Avatar
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    Makes my blood boil hearing this. I can't stand people who have no regard for a home just because it is rented. I was lucky when i rented out my home twice(both because of moves). I had fairly good tenants.
    You should be able to sue people like this to recoup your repair bill. It stinks.

  4. #4
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Sometimes you have to wonder even about the agents who let the places to such tenants.
    I am happy to say that I have not had major trouble with tenants, but have had a 2ple of major cleanups and re-paintings after some extreme "abrasion and rending" (in milder form, wear and tear).

    But just recently a friend of ours was blithely told by an agent that the tenant had "done a runner" and had left the place [putrid].

    It also came out in discussions with the agent that they had taken the tenant to the ??tribunal for unpaid rent. And the upshot was that our friend was being asked to deposit a substantial sum of money into the agent's trust account so that renovations - they were certainly needed after this - could be undertaken.

    On behalf of our friend - somewhat advanced in years and of little direct experience in such matters - we made representations to the agent, requiring same to furnish us with all sorts of documentation as to what they had done/were proposing to do/etc. Only one inspection had been made and early after the tenant had moved in, even though they had taken the tenant to the tribunal. And they blithely informed us that the tenant had kept pets there - against the rules - and had not returned the keys. At this juncture I looked at the agent and just said, "And you only did one inspection in the whole year?"

    Up till then, no mention of any bond return had been made, so this was secured, as well as an insurance claim for damage done. Furthermore, we put the renovations on hold (until we could make our own enquiries). It soon became apparent that the agents were doing renovations on the side, and had proposed the laying of "floating-board" floors that were "Strata-approved". I also then pointed out to him/her that they had done an inspection after the tenant had fled and had not even bothered to plug off a running tap in the laundry, and had left the water to stream across the tile floor for weeks. This was met with silence. At least he had the wit to realise there could be no reply.

    On talking with the very strata manager the next day - who had to come and let us in to the main front door as the agent didn't have a spare key - we were told that even if the floorboards were "approved" only one complaint of noise was needed to require the owner remove them forthwith.

    OK.... So, guess who are no longer the agents?

    It's a pity you had to find out like this, too Tikira.
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    Ausphotography Regular MissionMan's Avatar
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    Yup. My experience is good agents avoid bad tenants. If you have a problem with your tenant there is a good chance your agent hasn't done his work and isn't earning his commission. As an example, some agents I know won't allow overseas students into their properties because they are used to having personal maids in their home countries and completely trash the place when they don't have someone cleaning up after them. I remember years ago we inspected a place to rent at midday. The student was still in bed and couldn't be bothered to even partially clean up, there were dirty car tyres on the floor of the apartment (upmarket $700/week apartment) on the carpet and the whole place looked like a bomb had hit it. The agent was taken over from the previous agent and their first port of call was to get rid of the tenants.
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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post

    .......OK.... So, guess who are no longer the agents?.......
    as Mongo said, it must be a "good" and "knowledgeable" agent - not just any agent.

  7. #7
    Wayne shoots while Di chats!
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    The thing about this is that the agent has been trying to remove her nearly since she moved in. We even took her to the tribunal to evict her, but guess who did a major clean up and took photo's before?, so she got to stay. The agents did an incredible job to get her to remove all of her belongings and rubbish, so at least we did not have major dump bills. Our other rental house in that town is looked after well.

    Mongo- thanks for the great non professional advice, we have noted it and will implement the parts we do not currently do.

    Leanne, we would love to sue sometimes.
    Am, I really hate to think of vulnerable people being taken advantage of, it is great you were able to help them.

    Mission man. I think the agents have had more trouble than we did. They gave haer a chance because her mum is a good tenant for them, and this girl had two young kids.

    Oh well, the house needed other reno's (old house) so it is now way better.

    Thanks for the sympathy and help, maybe it will stop someone else getting into a similar pickle.
    Di

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    Unfortunately it can swing the other way as well.............
    I am babysitting a house for a 'friend' and still paying $300pw so no preferential treatment was asked or given.
    This person is now taking extreme liberties and stretching the friendship boundaries a little too far in respects to tenant privacy.
    She is selling and I have been more than reasonable withh requests.....I am now into my 5month of open inspections every saturday and as I work night shift my weekend time is absolutely precious to me.
    I have no time to set up for my beloved water drop shots because I am sick of plling it all down every saturday.
    Plus I have had no heating for 2 1/2 weeks and absolutely no offer to provide an alternative.

    My time is up and I am going, lol so if anyone has a rental property in south east melb...........I am a GREAT tenant

    But in all seriousness, I do feel great compassion for the landlords that do get horrendous tenants. I just dont understand some people lack of respect for anything these days.

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    Member Paddyob's Avatar
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    I'm not sure how one vets agents but some do little to earn their money. Our personal experience has been good as our agents have been alert and worked FOR us - except for one embarrassing instance where the office forgot to tell our tenant (a single mum) that we were coming with engineers to do a full inspection of the structure. However relatives have had similar experiences to your own, Tikira, facilitated by agents who didn't bother to do their job properly.
    We feel for you.
    Last edited by Paddyob; 30-07-2012 at 1:50pm.

  10. #10
    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    The agents are vital. We had problems with a tenant the agent supposedly vetted well. Saga happens. Tenant eventually gone, agent then gone. Insurance covered losses.
    We found a good elderly couple ourselves and discounted the agents fee to them in cheaper rent. Came time for them to move on, so we sold at nearly the top of the market. Not bothering with rentals any more.
    Agree with Cindy also, there are some not so reasonable landlords.
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  11. #11
    Wayne shoots while Di chats!
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    Mark, I think you are right about not bothering with rental houses, I just need to convince Wayne of that, and I don't think that will happen anytime soon

    Di

  12. #12
    Sir Rattus79 - The Proclaimant
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    This works both ways sometimes...

    I got stung $250 to "remove rubbish" from a storage shed in a unit.

    The "Rubbish" was a single wooden pallet I'd left there for the next tennant as the floor got wet every time it even looked like raining, making the space useless for storing anything.

    I explained this to the estate agent and was told "it's out of thier hands"

    I don't know about you, but it's never cost me $250 to do a dump run before ....
    Greg Bartle,
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  13. #13
    keen learner of new tricks.
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    I rented my house in Newcastle out in the early 80`s when I went out country to teach. I had about 7 different tenants in as many years and one time I went to have a look there was a great dane looking out the loungeroom venetian blinds (no pets) with the resultant chew marks on said blinds. One other time I went there, the tenant had set up a sweat shop in the back family room....3-4 sewing m/c`s and same amount of overlockers. I was very unimpressed. Sold the place when I returned as I could not bring myself to go back there and live......yuk and I bought it new in 74. I did rent a place later on and it was a pretty good experience overall but never again. So good luck to you both from here on in doing the landlord shuffle.
    Graeme
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    As someone who has recently become a tenant - I am really boggled by the way some people treat other peoples property after reading this (and having heard/seen other stories). I've recently moved in with my girlfriend, and we are both what I would term rather fastidious in our cleaning approach. While we are unable to afford a vacuum cleaner at the current juncture, we do our best to ensure the flat is kept in at least the best standard possible for our means (and borrow a vacuum cleaner in the interim). I find it rather disturbing how people can live in effectively a garbage tip, knowing that it isn't their place to mistreat but I guess perhaps it reflects the evolution of society, where people just don't seem to care. I certainly wouldn't dream of intentionally damaging anything on the property, and would cough up the costs to ensure the good faith between landlord and tenant was continued if any damage was accidentally caused. But maybe i'm just old fashioned? Sorry to hear you had such a rubbish experience Di (and Wayne).
    Last edited by Xebadir; 31-07-2012 at 4:14pm.
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