Fair wear and & tear is the gradual deterioration of aspects of a property which has resulted NATURALLY or from AGE. Allen Realty property managers inspect all properties periodically and then at the expiry of a tenancy to identify fair wear and tear and/or damage. Every specific issue is investigated on its individual merits and there is no ‘across the board’ policy. Most issues are easy to identify which category the damage falls in to. However, if your property manager is not confident on the exact cause we will make a recommendation to the owner and then take instructions as to what the property owners decides is an appropriate amount for the tenant to be charged PRIOR to all bonds refunded.
Stains on carpet/lino/nets/curtains and damages to walls are NOT generally considered wear and tear and are usually tenant damage. Cracks in paintwork can sometimes be caused by tenants but are usually caused by movement in walls/ceilings which can occur naturally in all properties. Cracked tiles require more investigation as this could be caused by tenants or an uneven surface or poor grouting and installation. When carpet is beginning to bubble slightly, show loose threads or discolour the age of the carpet is taken in to consideration and often if it exceeds a certain age then wear and tear can be diagnosed as a fault or contributor.
Some issues can be identified as being caused by both wear and tear and tenant damage. For example if damage is started as a result of age but then accelerated by the tenant. In this case the tenant may be responsible for a contribution towards the cost of remedying an issue. Other issues like faint oil stains on garage floors require more investigation as some level of discoloration may be expected over time. The most important issue is what steps the tenant has taken over the life of the tenancy and at the expiry of the tenancy to limit or reduce the problem.
If a maintenance problem has occurred and the tenant has not communicated this to a landlord then the tenant may also be held responsible for the acceleration of the damage. Issues such as mold and moisture can also be a difficult one. If a landlord identifies mold on walls, ceilings, nets or curtains that has caused discolouration or damage to the surfaces then this is usually NOT caused by the tenant even though it may have been accelerated by the tenant not cleaning the surfaces regularly. This problem should not be left until the termination of a tenancy as a tenant needs to be educated throughout the life of the tenancy on how to reduce and combat this problem.
If a landlord fails to effectively do this then they too have contributed towards the damage. Tenants need to be educated on opening windows and cleaning surfaces regularly to avoid this problem and property owners need to provide adequate insulation and ventilation. If they fail to do this then it is difficult if not impossible to chase tenants for this damage (tenants would be responsible for cleaning the surfaces but not necessarily the damage if mould has eaten in to surfaces).
Cleaning issues require a similar approach. It goes without saying that if a tenant fails to keep a property clean and tidy throughout the life of a tenancy then the property will degrade a lot quicker. This is NOT fair wear and tear and landlords should not wait until the end of a tenancy to address this issue. Regular inspections and tenant education is again the key to avoiding this issue. The Residential Tenancies Act is relatively vague on condition and requires properties to be reasonably clean and tidy. For this reason all Allen Realty tenants are required to sign a ‘Tenant Cleanliness Statement’, attached to the agreement which outlines specific obligations in a bid to educate tenants so all parties are on the same page with regards to presentation.
During the regular inspections tenants may need further direction (the most common is the use of fly spray and common requests to wipe ceilings) if properties are not up to standard and if problems do persist then we will take steps to terminate tenancies rather then let potential damage occur. If damage identified at the end of a tenancy is due to long term neglect then tenants should be charged but like moisture problems landlords need to take some responsibility for the lack of proactive management.
It is worth noting that a property manager and most property owners will ALLWAYS consider the history of the tenancy when judging what is fair wear and tear/tenant damage. For example, if a tenant has been at a property for years, has paid all rents/water bills in advance, has left the property absolutely immaculate inside and out but a small scratch is identified in the wall at the bottom of the stairs (common areas for damage when moving in or out of a property) the property manager may recommend to the owner that the tenant is not charged. However, if the owner requests we charge the tenant then we will oblige if the cost is reasonable.
Landlords need to be aware of common Tenancy Tribunal practises with regards to wear and tear and depreciation. It is common for adjudicators to enquire about the age and value of chattels and paintwork and proof of remedial work when considering claims for damages vs. wear and tear. Accountants often depreciate chattels using a percentage of the value and age and the Tenancy Tribunal does the same. They may not order the tenant to reimburse the complete cost of fixing damage to as aspect of the property that is years old and not brand new. Landlords must appear to be reasonable with their claims. If a landlord applies with an unreasonable claim then they may lose the benefit of the doubt. If a landlord is unreasonable and tenant proves that the rest of the tenancy has run smoothly then a tenant may receive the benefit of the doubt instead. Be reasonable in your negotiations and do not try to profit. Also bear in mind that if you rent a property to a family of 8 and at the expiry of a tenancy the Tribunal may rule that the landlord must expect slightly more wear and tear then if they had rented to a party of 4. When negotiating all issues need to be taken in to consideration.
When preparing for Tribunal hearings you will require quotes/invoices/invoices/inspection reports and pictures. If you turn up with photos and quotes then you may not receive the cost of the work unless it has actually been done. The tenancy Tribunal is not in the habit of awarding to the landlord when work has not even been completed to remedy the issue. So best practise is to identify issues, identify the course, request a quote to repair, and then negotiate with the tenant in order to mediate an appropriate settlement. You may even offer sweeteners if the tenant reimburses you in the next 48 hours. As you are dealing with people and their emotions the successful outcome always depends on the process being completed the right way.
An experienced property manager can usually identify the difference between damage and wear and tear and negotiate with tenants successfully with no emotion. This can be a difficult and time consuming process for private owners who are busy and more emotionally attached. This is one of the benefits of having a property manager and effective communication between you and your manager is the key to the successful outcome. At the expiry of each tenancy your property manager should report on any damage and the suggestions for reimbursement/compensation so there are no surprises down the line for the property owner.
Allen Realty Ltd offers a competitively priced property management and letting service that will take the hassle away from property investors and improves the performance of your property or portfolio. Our comprehensive service is customised to suit individual client’s requirements.
Coworking Countdown – 4 Things to Prepare Before You Move In
The coworking scene has done anything but slowed down. Coworking spaces in Auckland alone vary between your upmarket, corporate office to the trendier, chic ones. Certainly, investing in this type of commercial real estate has never been more attractive. There is a space for everyone in this landscape and for businesses looking for new workspaces there’s not only variety available, there’s options at an affordable price.
When a business has finally found an office, in one of these buildings they have not only found a workspace, they’ve also found community as well. One coworking space – Servcorp – is a good example of the way work and networking have intersected to provide business with the chance to grow. This new way of leasing premises is highly attractive to the leasee and the property owner. Here are some tips for moving into a new coworking space, so the business can prepare to maximise their working experience.
Continue reading to learn what you can do to prepare for your move to your new coworking space to ensure the move is as seamless as possible.
Coworking presents professionals with the chance to use the space to just work or to build on their professional network. Before getting comfortable in your new office, sit down and take inventory of the tasks beyond work that you would like to accomplish. When writing down your goals and objectives, keep in mind the types of activities that you would like to engage in the space.
Of the many activities, formal networking events and community social events are the types you want to pay attention to if you plan to use the space to build a social network. Not that you have to be out and about every night, but scheduling time to promote your business is one way to maximise the coworking space. Ultimately, if the purpose of coworking is to build a networking platform or to grow your business, find ways to incorporate the more social aspect of the space.
Tool Of The Trade
Another thing that professionals moving into a coworking space should prepare for is knowing what amenities the space provides. Standard spaces fit out the office with exceptional IT services and office equipment, but other amenities include programs and conferences that help teach entrepreneurs how to build their businesses. Before moving into your space, consider checking out all the perks of working in your coworking space.
Moreover, make sure you know what is available for use in the office, so as to bring supplies if necessary. While staplers and other office products come standard in a conventional office, some spaces might not make this available to employees. On a larger scale, make sure there is a receptionist available, and if not, know exactly how to retrieve any messages.
Change Of Business Address
Before leaving your conventional or home office, make sure that clients and other important people know your new location and phone number. One simple way to do this is to email clients of your relocation as to avoid any mix-ups. Furthermore, make sure to forward any business mail to your new location, as to avoid missing important parcels. Finally, make sure you know the building’s office hours for scheduling appointments.
Check out the coworking space’s event calendar. In addition to the numerous networking opportunities in the day, many coworking communities hold events to get the professionals to engage with each other. Make an exerted effort to attend at least a few of the events every week to raise your business’s profile. You never know what opportunity awaits when engaging people from your profession and others.
Preparing And Putting Coworking To Work
Coworking makes moving effortless simply by alleviating much of the work associated with relocating. You can, however, maximise your move by putting together an agenda of how you plan to use the work to benefit your business. Your plan will help you use your space more effectively for building a platform for business success.
Auction Site For Renters
New Zealand will soon see the rise of a new auction site for renters. Just in on stuff.co.nz Rentberry has confirmed they will be launching here and in Australia. The online service offers renters the opportunity to bid for rental properties. Landlords set the ‘reserve’ or rent level they hope will generate lots of prospective tenants interest and then the bidding war takes off.
New Zealand will soon see the rise of a new auction site for renters. Just in on stuff.co.nz Rentberry has confirmed they will be launching here and in Australia. The online service offers renters the opportunity to bid for rental properties. Landlords set the ‘reserve’ or rent level they hope will generate lots of prospective tenants interest and then the bidding war takes off. Landlords get the final say on whom is the successful applicant and while they may review the highest bids first, they won’t be choosing the tenant just based on what they’re prepared to pay.
An Auckland property management company spokesperson said common-sense will prevail among Landlords. Securing long term tenancies with tenants that have good credit histories and references will remain the top priority. Prospective tenants information is available to the Landlord in the service so they can select the tenant without delay.
Rentberry will provide more transparency of the selection process with prospective tenants and Landlords learning what the true market value is for their property. This is a positive move for investors especially those who are new to the rental market and Landlords whom self manage their rental properties and may currently be charging more or less rent.
There has been some healthy criticism of the service even in it’s infancy. In America affordable housing advocates are angered by the service and tenant groups in Australia are wary that the service will push up prices.
Rentberry has been operating in the USA since 2016 and is currently expanding into 1000 cities there. It’s focus is on renting Apartments and this is where we see the service take off in our neck of the woods in our main centres in New Zealand.
This blog article was written for PropertyBlogs by Mobilize Mail.
Tenants Let Off With 4.8% Increase
Weekly rents rose just 4.8 percent in the twelve months to July 2016 according to Trade Me Rent Price Index. Tenants will be relieved Landlords are being realistic and not keen on hiking rents arbitrarily. Property sales have slowed and the average asking price has dropped significantly up ten percent since July 2015.
Weekly rents rose just 4.8 percent in the twelve months to July 2016 according to Trade Me Rent Price Index. Tenants will be relieved Landlords are being realistic and not keen on hiking rents arbitrarily
Property sales have slowed and the average asking price has dropped significantly up ten percent since July 2015. Of particular interest is the slow down in property asking prices in Auckland where a typical property listed in June was just $3,750 less than the asking price in July. According to this article Investors are buying most of the houses.
In Auckland City and on the North Shore investors have purchased 50 percent of the properties on the market. A North Shore and Auckland City property management company spokesperson said investors are listing new properties with them. In Auckland City it’s mostly apartments and there’s high demand for quality living quarters downtown.
“In July 2011 New Zealand’s median weekly rent was $350 a week, that has risen by $90 a week over the past 5 years, while at the same time the increase in the average asking price of a typical New Zealand property has risen by $200,000 an increase of 51 per cent.”
While there’s the odd sensational article on ‘greedy landlords’ hiking rents to unprecedented levels evidence proves otherwise and tenants are the winners.
In the regions there has been some catch up with rents rising by double digit percentages in Northland, Manawatu, and Marlborough. However urban average rents have remained stagnant.
This blog article was written for PropertyBlogs by Mobilize Mail.
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