RENTAL TIPS FOR LANDLORDS
PREPARING YOUR PROPERTY FOR RENTAL
The first impression of your property can make all the difference in securing the right tenant. Here are a few tips to help you do that..
v Freshly paint or clean all walls if needed and wash the windows. Ensure all screens are undamaged & clean.
v Ensure all lawns have been mowed and all hedges, overgrown plants & overhanging trees are trimmed and pruned. Also ensure all bins are the adequate size and have been emptied prior to the move in of your new tenant.
v Clean out the garage/carport and any garden shed. Tenancy laws require an ’empty’, clean property.
v Clean the property throughout – particularly the kitchen and bathroom. These two rooms are highly important factors in whether a tenant will show interest in the property.
PRICING YOUR PROPERTY
Make sure you are offering your vacant property at the adequate market value to avoid a lengthy and costly vacancy. Trying to increase the rent by a small amount can add up to a lot if the property sits vacant. When you have a good tenant keep the rent at market value. If rent increases are excessive, you can risk losing your tenant. On the other hand there are times where your property could be rented for a higher value. To ensure that you are not undervaluing your property it pays to know how many similar properties are available and how long they have been on the market.
Keeping on top of maintenance issues can save you money in the long run. Good quality properties attract good quality tenants and vice versa. A happy tenant is more likely to be a good payer.
Ensure that the appropriate checks are carried out on all prospective tenants at application stage. The large majority of default tenants are conditioned to be just that, and usually have a history of default. It is so much better to have a slightly longer vacancy than to have a non-payer.
Be sure to have landlord insurance. We always recommend obtaining a quote from an insurer that focuses on investment property insurance. Your building insurance will not cover you in the unfortunate event your tenant defaults in rental payments or causes damage to your property with a cost exceeding the bond..
RENTAL TIPS FOR TENANTS
Applying for a property
Now that you’ve found the rental property you want to lease it’s time to apply for it by completing an application form. Your application should also include a copy of your photo ID, previous rent receipts and any supporting documentation. The sooner you get your application in and the more information you can provide the quicker your application will be processed.
A holding deposit can only be taken once your application has been approved and the amount is usually equivalent to one weeks rent. Your deposit will secure the property to your move in date. Holding deposits are not refunded if you change your mind.
Your rental bond will be lodged with the NSW Department of Fair Trading. The bond is held as security against any damage or undue wear and tear. The bond will be refunded promptly after you vacate, providing the property is left in as close as possible to the condition as when your tenancy commenced and there are no monies owing.
Insuring your personal items
You should consider taking out your own contents insurance when renting a property to cover your personal possessions.
When you’re renting a property, don’t let maintenance issues build up around you. Always inform your landlord or property manager of any problems that require attention so repairs can be expedited.
Understanding “Rent in Advance”
Please ensure your rent is always paid in advance. Some tenants find this concept hard to understand, and some mistakenly believe that the first 2 weeks rent paid is held in trust for use at the end of tenancy, like a bond. It is important to note the first 2 weeks rent paid is for your first 2 weeks of tenancy, so at the end of the first week, you are only 1 week in advance.
It is always important to maintain your rent in advance, therefore after moving in your next rent payment should be made within the following week. ie. for example if you moved in on Friday your rent is due on the following Friday.
During the course of your tenancy, the premises will be inspected periodically. Our office will contact you to arrange a mutually convenient time. We invite you to be present during all inspections.
Termination of the Residential Tenancy Agreement
Your Residential Tenancy agreement is a legal and binding contract, providing protection for both you and the Landlord. You can terminate the Residential Tenancy Agreement in the following ways:
- If you intend to vacate at the end of your Residential Tenancy Agreement you are required to give fourteen (14) days written notice prior to the expiry of the fixed term of your Agreement
- Once the fixed term has expired, you are at liberty to continue living at the property or to vacate. If you intend to vacate, written notice to that effect must be received by our office at least twenty one (21) days prior to vacating
Lease Break – If however, unforeseen circumstance arise and you have to vacate prior to the expiration of your Residential Tenancy Agreement, please contact your Property Manager immediately and we will endeavour to find another suitable tenant. However, a break fee is now applicable, penalty of between 4 and 6 weeks rent applies for a lease of 3 years or less.