LANDLORD INFORMATION

At Builders Property Direct we provide landlords, investors and tenants with an efficient service conforming to the complexities of today’s tenancy laws. With that in mind we provide the following professional property management services to our clients.

You, Us and the Tenant

We would suggest that your communication with tenants be through your Managing Agent.  In our position as your agent, we provide a buffer between the tenant and you.

This places the management of your property on a business basis and allows us to manage the property in knowledge of the total facts.  Developing a close relationship with the tenant often limits your ability to charge a market rent.

Advertising

Rental List

Our rental list is updated daily and is a great source of enquiry.  This service is provided free of charge.

Internet

Our website is designed to attract tenants to your property.  We advertise your property on our home page www.builderspd.com.auand also www.realestate.com.au  This service is provided free of charge.

For Lease Board

Once your property has been listed, or when your tenant supplies our office with the required 28 days notice, a For Lease Board will be placed at your property (subject to Body Corporate regulations)

 

Prospective Tenant Inspections and Selection

We carefully and professionally consider the tenant selection. All property inspections are in the company of a Property Manager. For safety reasons we do not hand out keys to prospective tenants.  The prospective tenant is invited to complete an application form, which allows us to check on the tenant’s history. By contacting the tenants previous landlord/estate agent, employers, personal references, as well as to access their ability to afford the rent. We can also run a public record search on your prospective tenant to find out any hidden financial problems or bad rental history they may have. All prospective tenants must view your property prior to applying for the property. These opens will be conducted both during the week and on weekends. When the property is tenanted, we can begin to show prospective tenants through during the last two weeks to the current tenancy period.

If there is the slightest doubt about the applicant’s suitability, it is our policy to pass over the applicant. We regard this part of our role as Property Managers as the most important.  Only after the applicant’s suitability as a prospective tenant has been fully established will we contact the owner to discuss the applications and receive instructions on the leasing of the property. A point to remember is that you, as the landlord, are ultimately the person responsible for making the final decision.

 

Stipulations on Tenant Type (Discrimination Act)

The Federal Government has legislation in place (the Discrimination Act) which prevents you, as an owner, from setting down requirements relating to race, religion or gender. While we will take care to select good tenants, we cannot accept instructions based on breaches of the legislation.

 

Residential Tenancies Agreement

The lease prepared by us is a legal and binding contract that provides clear written terms for the tenancy.  It protects all parties to the lease and clearly outlines the obligations of all parties.

 

Once a tenant has been approved, the tenant is required to pay the first months rent & sign the leases within 24 hours of being approved. Until all paperwork has been signed & rental monies have been paid, the property will remain on the internet & opens will continue to be conducted.

 

 

Tenancy Length

Rental periods are negotiated by our office with a minimum of six (6) to twelve (12) months. This allows for regular rent reviews.

Upon expiration of the fixed term lease, rentals revert to a periodic tenancy whereby a tenant leases the property on a month by month agreement with the same conditions of the original lease. A further fixed period can be requested by either the landlord or tenant. Although, we are not able to insist on a fixed term lease renewal as the Residential Tenancies Act states that it must not be mandatory.

 

 

Special Gardens

We sometimes are appointed to manage a property with special gardens and/or lawns. Tenants may not take the same meticulous care of gardens as the owner would. If you want extra attention for your gardens, we would suggest a contract with a mowing and gardening service. We can arrange this if you require. The costs will vary, depending upon the size and nature of the work required.  We can arrange for a quotation to be supplied. In these circumstances, we would of course regularly inspect the property to maintain a high standard. 

 

Condition Report

It is our policy to compile an inventory of the property at the beginning of each tenancy with as much detail as possible, including digital photographs. We have this verified by the tenant and signed as true and correct. Any damage caused by fair wear and tear that is recorded at the end of the tenancy, which if not on the initial inventory, is repaired at the expense of the tenant.

 

Routine Property Inspections

We inspect your investment property on a regular basis. The first routine inspection will be conducted in the fourth month after the commencement of the tenancy and then every six months thereafter. Once completed, a written report will be sent to you for your records. When we attend the property, we check the tenants care of the premises, identify any items for maintenance and this is also a good time to access the current rental.

 

Repairs

We have maintenance staff on call and we can, if authorised, arrange for repairs to be carried out (naturally only at the owner’s request) and pay tradespeople out of monthly rental. 

For major repairs we would first obtain quotations.  Please note that under the terms of the Residential Tenancies Act, urgent repairs MUST be attended to promptly.

Under the Residential Tenancies Act tenants have the right to have urgent repairs up to $1800.00 plus GST carried out. Therefore if we are unable to contact you when an urgent repair occurs (i.e. a burst hot water service) we will have the required maintenance done and advise you as soon as possible.

 

Rent in Advance

We specify that tenants pay rent monthly in advance. This means that the tenant pays in advance for their lease period.  For example, they would rent now for next month. This allows us to chase late payment and keep tenants up to date.  Despite these precautions, we cannot issue a “Notice to Vacate” until a tenant is 15 days overdue, i.e. they have occupied the property for 15 days and paid no rent for that period.  When we issue a “Notice to Vacate” to a tenant, we would also apply to the Victorian Civil Authorities Tribunal for a hearing date.

 

Arrears Management

Rental arrears are checked daily and immediately followed up if more than 3 days behind. If the tenant is more than three days late we will phone the tenants and remind them that their rent is due. After 5 days they then receive an arrears letter, 10 days they will receive a 2nd notice. If the tenant falls more than 14 days in arrears, on the 15th day, the tenant will be issued with a Notice To Vacate.

 

Rental Statements

Prompt, accurate monthly computerised Rent Statements clearly showing tenants paid to date, documents outgoings and monies banked as per instructions are forwarded. Disbursements are made daily.

All funds will be directly deposit into a nominated bank account for your convenience.

South East Water and Council Rates notices can be re-directed to our office and payments for these accounts can be made from your rental.

 

When do I get my Rental Payment

We are aware that for the majority of our investors, rental payments go towards a mortgage and are anxious to receive payment to avoid possible late fee charges.

We suggest that in this situation you have your mortgage payments paid two months in advance, this way you are reducing the chance of late payment fees with the bank should your tenant ever pay their rent a few days late. *Please note that no legal action can be taken towards the tenant until they are more than 14 days in arrears. 

 

Financial Statement

At the end of the financial year a statement is prepared and forwarded to you. A cost of $10.00 will be deducted for your rental income to cover preparing your End of Financial Year Statement.

 

Insurance

It is part of our responsibility as your agent to advise you of the risks associated with renting your property and the options available to offer protection for your investment. We encourage all of our property owners to seriously consider obtaining public liability insurance and landlord/ contents insurance.

If you already have legal liability and/or landlord protection insurance we would recommend that you look at the policy, as some do exclude tenanted properties. Please contact your insurance company for clarification.

Please be aware that unless you have contents insurance on your property, items such as carpets, light fittings and blinds are generally not covered under general building insurance.

 

As per the Residential Tenancies Act 1997, all fees, both Letting & Management are negotiable.

 

Letting Fees

Our letting fee equates to 1 ½  weeks rent plus GST.

Our letting fee covers the following:

·         Initial inspection of your property and recommendations regarding rental values, repairs and maintenance required.

·         Promotion of the vacancy or availability of the property.

·         Digital photography of the property and uploading to internet sites

·         Personalized inspections of the property with prospective tenants.

          Company policy is such that we do not hand out keys to the properties

·         Reference checking of prospective tenants.

·         Preparation of the Tenancy Agreement.

·         The signing of the Tenancy Agreement, and completion of the condition report in conjunction with photos (if necessary)

·         Lodgement of bond to the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority

 

Lease Renewal Fees

Lease renewal preparation fee is $50.00

Our renewal fee covers the following:

·         The preparation of a new lease agreement under the terms agreed to by the landlord & tenant

·         The charge is only applicable once a signed lease has been returned by the tenant

 

Management Fees

Our Management Fee is 7% plus GST of the monthly gross rental.

Our management fee covers the following:

·         Collect rental payments in accordance with the tenancy agreement.

·         Negotiation of lease renewals with existing tenants.

·         Regular routine inspection of the property and written reports to the owner.

·         Pay authorised accounts and statutory charges.

·         Disburse the net rent to the owner in accordance with the owner’s instructions, with a statement detailing all outgoings.

·         Organise property maintenance.

.         Advise owner on necessary repairs and maintenance

.         Prepare specifications for tradespeople

.         Arrange quotations for repairs and maintenance

.         Pay trade accounts

.         Confirm completion of works

·         Assist with arranging Landlord Protection Insurance cover and initiate claims if and when required.

 

Residential Tenancies Tribunal Attendance

In the event that a hearing attendance at the Residential Tenancies Tribunal is required, a fee of $42.40 is charged. This fee covers the application fee ($44.90) and registered post ($3.60). A fee for the issue of a Warrant of Possession is $114.30. Our attendance fee for attending the tribunal is $99.00. These amounts will be deducted from your rental income.

 

Owner's Responsibility

There are further provisions of the Residential Tenancies Act 1997, which are self-explanatory.  However, the following matters require special note.  The Residential Tenancies Act to requires the owner:

1.       The lessor is responsible for ensuring the Residential premises are clean, fit to live in and in a reasonable state of repair.

2.       The lessor is responsible for maintaining all locks and security devices and keys must be provided for all of these.

3.       Maintain the furniture and fittings, goods and chattels in a good condition.

4.       Comply with the lawful requirements in regard to health and safety standards.

5.       Allow quiet enjoyment to the tenant of the dwelling house, furniture and fittings, goods and chattels let within.

 

Presentation

It is important that the owners set the standard in presenting their property in which they would like the tenants to maintain.  If a property is let with shabby gardens, we can hardly expect the tenants to maintain them in top condition.  The tendency is for the tenants to refer to the condition report when they took possession.

 

Fair Wear and Tear

“Fair wear and tear” is a concept that causes some problems if not understood by both owners and tenants.  The tenants must maintain the property they let in good condition.  Problems arise when the owners expect the tenant to maintain the property in new condition.  For your guidance you might expect an economic life for some of the major items as follows:

Carpets (5-8 years, depending on quality)

Vinyl (8-10 years, depending on quality)

External Painting (4-6 years, depending on quality)

Internal Painting (5-7 years, depending on quality)

Curtains (7-10 years, depending on quality)

Electric Hot Water Units (5-10 years, depending on quality)

Toilet Cisterns (5-10 years, depending on quality)

Dishwashers (5-8 years, depending on quality)

Tap Washers (1-2 years, depending on quality)

Electrical Items (Indeterminate, depending on frequency use and age of house) (Eg. Switches of & Power points)  

Guttering (We suggest gutters be cleared annually)

 

Improvements

Before undertaking improvements, please consult your tax agent for advice.

 

Future Improvements

If you have a property which requires improvements and you intend to undertake this work at some stage, we would advise that the tenant not be informed until the work is scheduled. We show most properties in an “as is” condition and adjust rent accordingly when the property is improved. We do not inform tenants of proposed improvements until a date is set down for the works to commence.

 

Tenants Undertaking Improvements

We do not recommend agreements with tenants to undertake improvements in exchange for a reduction in rent. These agreements invariably cause problems associated with timing and quality.  We suggest that you keep negotiations on a business basis.

 

We’re Available To Meet With You

We are available to meet with you anytime during business hours, by appointment. An appointment allows us both to be prepared and ensures you don’t have to wait.