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cassandra

Property manager issues

Hi all, new to the forum (well, I have been lurking for some time).

I am in Australia but own a property in Chatham which has, for the last four years been rented out. My current agent shows a complete lack of comprehension of their duties to me, the owner, or to my tenants for that matter. I begin to wonder if they know what they are engaged to do at all. Mad

At present the outgoing tenant has left with two weeks in arrears and the house in a sty. The reasons for this are manifold, but at root are, in my opinion, due to the uncooperative and unhelpful approach of the property managers. The tenant has disputed the withholding of her bond. The insurance has covered the rental arrears.

So a present I have new tenants moving in at the end of the month, a filthy house, and agents who will not provide me with any useful information to assist in raising the necessary funds to deal with the situation. I took matters into my own hands and arranged for someone to go in and deal with the issues who, when I spoke to him, was happy to do so 'on terms' but he then got cold feet and referred the matter to the agents yesterday. The result so far is that the agent has simply cut off all communication with me and left the matter in the hands of a colleague.

I have only sufficient funds to pay for two months mortgage and on-costs as this was sprung on me on short notice.

If anyone can advise me in any way (how to approach the agent to resume relations at least long enough to sort out the present issue - a competent letting agency in the Medway, or anything along these lines) I would appreciate your help.

I am presently 'between jobs' here but hope to remedy that situation in a few more weeks if my interview is successful. But as you will imagine, am not in a good position to raise finance right now. The British bank will not extend my overdraft as I am an Australian citizen and apparently this prevents them doing so - though apparently did not impede them when I sought a mortgage back during the property boom.
john of wessex

Try a Chartered Surveyor?

Basically letting agents are unregulated and in many cases a bunch of cowboys
cassandra

Excuse my ignorance, but what is a Chartered Surveyor? I am not familiar with the term...
john of wessex

http://www.rics.org/uk/

Basically someone who may not be a cowperson...........
cassandra

Brilliant! Thanks John. I will check that out!! Very Happy
cassandra

Thanks once again John. I have had an email from RICS with the names of two local members. Will contact them tomorrow. I live in a rural location and have to drive out for a signal on the phone, and tonight is a wee bit wild and windy. Mean time I have requested a copy of their complaints procedure and so will be initiating that tomorrow also if they bother to send me a copy. They are members of ARLA so hopefully they will have one.
cassandra

Just a quick update to let you know this finally sorted itself out - I managed to find some money and the banks (after three abortive attempts) managed to pass it from one to the other, the new tenants are in and settling in nicely. The property management company is still on high alert and being helpful since I threatened them with a formal complaint and I remain hopeful I can contact the new tenant and establish a less convoluted way of sorting out maintenance issues since they are clearly related to people in a variety of trades and are cheerful and willing to do lots of the work themselves as part of their 'nesting' process. So finally things are looking up in that department. Yay!

Thanks for the help and support you gave during this traumatic process!! Very Happy
Mistress Rose

Glad all is well on the rental Cassandra. Hope your threat to the 'agents' continues to work. As I e-mailed you, best to keep in touch with the tenants, as you can both be helpful to each other.
cassandra

Yes I am making up a bundle for their expected 'new arrival' due next month, a little cot quilt and a soft rattle. I will pop in a letter introducing myself and providing my email address so they can get in touch if they feel they are not getting adequate service from the landlords. These tenants seem to be 'keepers' with long-term plans for their continued occupancy - who knows, in a few more years when the property prices recover I may even be able to give them first refusal on the place... I hope so - not sure I could cope with that sort of trauma too often ... Laughing
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