Things you should know & Landlord Responsibilities
- Payment of rent from the previous month is paid to you by North Estate Agents on the first working day of the following month.
- Although tenants are required to pay for metered water, the bill comes to your account. We pass the bill on to the tenants, and your account is then reimbursed on receipt of the tenant’s payment.
- Rent arrears are checked frequently. As it can often take 2-3 weeks to get a Tenancy Tribunal Hearing, we act on rent arrears as soon as they occur. This involves contacting the tenant, issuing required notices and applying to the Tribunal as soon as possible. We also encourage tenants to attend mediation, where the breach can often be resolved without the need to attend a Hearing.
- Under the Residential Tenancies Act, gardens and lawns are to be kept in a “reasonable condition” by the tenants. Pruning trees and hedges, spraying and vine removal are the landlord’s responsibility. We encourage landlords to let North Estate Agents manage this on your behalf.
- Mould is prevalent in our climate. It is the owner’s responsibility to rid properties of mould. Properties should include security catches on windows so the house can be aired. Fans should be installed in bathrooms to provide adequate ventilation.
- If your property has a pool, we will need to ensure it meets pool safety requirements and that it is registered. We recommend that a professional pool company is appointed for monthly maintenance checks. This way we can ensure tenants are keeping the pool in good condition as well.
- We encourage landlords to insure chattels such as carpet, drapes, stove and other white ware available for a tenant’s use. Remember to tell the insurance company that the property is tenanted. Some policies are designed specifically to cover landlords for malicious damage by tenants. Ask your Property Manager for more information.
- Rent increases are governed by the current rental market. Our Business Development Manager and Property Managers can provide you with advice on current market rates. North Estate Agents reviews your rental return regularly and adjusts accordingly.
Landlord responsibilities are spelled out in the Residential Tenancies Act. If you have access to the internet, you can download this document from the Government web site: http://www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au/Tenants_and_home_owners/Being_a_landlord.html
We provide the following extract from this web site: “The landlord rents residential premises to a tenant. The landlord must abide by the requirements of the Residential Tenancies Act. One of these requirements is that the landlord must ensure the premises (and ancillary property) comply with health, safety and housing standards. The landlord must provide the premises in a reasonable state of cleanliness and repair and must maintain them (having regard to their age, character and prospective life).
The landlord is to abide with all the conditions included in the tenancy agreement and supply agreed services.”
The Landlord has an obligation to:
- Provide the premises in a clean and reasonable state
- Maintain and repair the premises
- Ensure that the tenant is given reasonable peace, comfort and privacy whilst living in the premises
- Pay council rates and taxes; provide and maintain locks to ensure the premises are secure
You also have the right to inspect the property, but appropriate notice must be given to the tenant first. The amount of notice required is all spelled out in the Act. In addition to maintenance, it is essential that you keep the property insured, particularly keeping in place appropriate Public Liability Insurance.
Residential rentals in NSW and QLD come under the Residential Tenancies Act.
All of our Team are fully conversant with this Act in both states and attend regular training sessions to keep abreast of this complex legislation.
Below are a number of bulletins (PDF) issued by the Tenancies Department covering some of the main issues when owning residential rental properties in NSW and QLD.