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Getting Property Management Right!

By Kevin Kelly

Introduction

Getting Property Management Right! Managing a tenancy is not for the unwary! It would be great to take a prospective tenant on face value, receive the rent on time without question, have the property well cared for all of the time and all expectations met. But we know that is not reality!

Over the next several weeks and due to popular demand, we will share with you some further hints and tips to ‘getting it right!’

1. Getting Property Management Right!

Tenant Selection- Human nature is very predictable! The one thing you can rely on is that people will generally be consistent with who they are! If you can check their rental payment track history for the last 1 to 2 years, and know how they maintained the property, you can be assured they will most probably perform the same way with your tenancy. Past behaviour generally dictates future performance.

A bad tenant will generally be bad, an average tenant generally average, and a good tenant  good…subject to a change in circumstances!

2. Getting Property Management Right!

Barking Dogs Get Fed First! Some tenants who choose not to regularly pay their rent on time because they ‘prioritise’ their regular income for ‘other things’, will usually pay their most urgent bills to only those who are ‘barking the loudest’. This could be the electricity that is about to be disconnected, or some other urgent bill. With these types of tenants, unless you are constantly following them up you may not be priority to paying you your rent monies on time. Remember that barking dogs get fed first!

3. Getting Property Management Right!

Conduct Regular Inspections- Never assume that your tenants are looking after your property without confirming this with regular inspections. Sometimes the people that have convinced you the most that they will do the ‘right thing’ are the ones that will not look after your property!

Inspect as often as you can (within legislation guidelines) and ensure that your property is being well maintained.

4. Getting Property Management Right!

Your Tenant and their Pets- Be Specific! If you allow your tenant to have a cat or dog, be sure that you sign an agreement with them with conditions of the keeping that pet. Ensure that your agreement states the type of pet (cat or dog etc), its breed, age, colour and even its name! This ensures that your permission extends to only that pet and to no other.

Also have in writing that the pet cannot come inside the property, cannot be a nuisance to neighbours, and for the tenant to be responsible for any damages. Having this agreement in writing assures that expectations are clearly understood for a better tenancy relationship.

5. Getting Property Management Right!

Always Get Tenancy Agreements in Writing- Always have your tenancy agreement in writing with your tenants. Gone are the days of ‘a handshake agreement’ as they can be vague and details once verbally agreed upon can then be easily thrown aside in a dispute.

Ensure all your expectations are clearly explained, water charges outlined, how to pay the rent and when, the amount of bond, as well as other important conditions are explained thoroughly. Remember- a well explained tenancy makes for smoother sailing!

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