Property Management

Property Management Questions

What happens if my tenant doesn’t pay rent?

We have a very through tenant screening process to ensure only the best tenants are presented to you for approval, to minimise problems arising. 

Expectations are made very clear at the commencement of the tenancy. We have zero tolerance for rent arrears. Communication processes with tenants are designed to enable us to offer solutions to any enquiries, long before they become a problem. 

We have a comprehensive system of sms, phone and email reminders.

We offer several rent payment options to make it easy for tenants to pay their rent. 

We use all legal avenues in accordance with the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 and keep you informed.

Do you recommend landlord insurance?

“Don’t learn safety by accident!” In an ideal world insurance would be not necessary but unfortunately, whilst we can look into tenants past rental history we can’t look into their future. Tenants face the same society issues as anyone else – job losses, relationship break downs, illness etc. and these can all contribute to a tenancy turning sour. Sometimes, no matter how carefully screened, tenants can let you down.

Having landlord insurance is a way of protecting your asset in these rare circumstances and gives you added peace of mind.

Other insurance – Public liability insurance is a must to rent the home out and comes with your building policy. Contents insurance is high recommended for floor coverings and window furnishes etc.

We are not legally allowed to give advice on insurance but here is a list of some of the insurance providers that our clients have used. Aon, DFS Insurance Services, Terri Sheer Insurance and clients own bank provided insurance. Please be sure to check out all terms and conditions to make sure products offered are right for your needs.

How do you communicate with me?

We use a range of communication methods and each is tailored to suit you. We use phone, text and email to provide clear communication. We do need instructions in writing so an email/fax will be required as a follow up.

Can I sell my investment property with a current tenant in place?

Yes you can. You must inform the tenant of your intentions before they sign their lease renewal if the home will be listed in the first two months of the new lease.

If the house is sold the tenancy details are listed on the contract and it is a condition of the sale that the tenancy remains intact and is attuned to the buyer.

Can I move my property to McAdam and Turnbull Realty in the middle of a lease?

Yes you can. We often find that when clients move to our agency because they are unhappy with the service they have been receiving, that the tenants are also unhappy and keen to move to an agency that provides better service. We work with the tenants and the previous agency to ensure a smooth transition.

Should I allow pets?

We recommend only outside pets are considered and each pet is taken on its merits. We usually refer to pets as dogs, cats and birds, but we are seeing an increase in reptiles as well. The size and type of property also effect this decision. For e.g. some back yards just aren’t big enough for large dogs and have no where to secure an animal during bad weather.

By not considering pets you are potentially losing a large share of the tenant market. A good tenant is usually a good tenant – pet or not. Tenants must adhere to local council laws in relation to the keeping of pets.

Do you guarantee the tenant?

We have a very thorough tenant screening process and only those that meet our five criteria are put to you for your consideration. We work proactively to manage the tenancy to nip issues in the bud, but the reality is whilst we rent to humans and not robots, things will occasionally go pear shaped. We can look into their past but not their future.

We can’t guarantee the tenant but we can guarantee our prompt response to issues and clear communication with you about recommended solutions.

Who pays my water rates?

You do. Either we can take it from rent monies or you can pay it yourself, but the legalisation doesn’t allow us enough time to have the tenant pay for their consumption before the rates are due.

You can only seek reimbursement from the tenant for water consumption – never the access charge and then only if certain criteria are met.

The property must be individually metered and it must state in the lease that water is payable. How much water consumption payable depends on whether the property has water saving devices fitted on all taps and toilets. See our blog for more information.

What is fair wear and tear?

The meaning of wear and tear is not clearly defined in the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act. Standard term 37 of the General Tenancy Agreement states tenants are required to leave the property in the same condition it was found, fair wear and tear excepted. The term goes on to say that wear and tear is ‘wear that occurs from normal use’ and ‘changes that happen with ageing’. In reality wear and tear is sometimes hard to clearly define and expectations can vary greatly. The question to ask yourself is, ‘would this have happened if you were living there, taking care of the property and using the property for its intended and normal use’?

What is a fixed term and periodic lease?

A fixed term lease is one with a fixed start date and a fixed end date. A periodic lease has a fixed start date but no end date. In the past you may have heard it called a “month to month lease” but that is not quite accurate.

Whilst we recommend that you have a fixed term lease in place, there are times when a periodic lease may be a of benefit to you as it allows you to have the flexibility of being able to have vacant possession of the property, with the required two months notice to tenants.

Be sure to check with your insurer that they still cover your policy if the tenant is on a periodic lease.