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Real Estates Bullying Ways

By Leiulu 21 February 2013 42

I am curious to hear if anyone has had any success taking a real estate through the Tribunal and Fair Trading?

We decided to break a 12 month fixed term lease by 6 weeks. Since the moment we told the real estate, we have copped hell from them. They were given 5 weeks’ notice prior to us vacating the property to start re-advertising, and have the place open for inspections multiple times a week. The house was in immaculate condition for each opening.

They wanted us to continue to pay rent for the 6 weeks until our lease was formally expired, and to pay a week’s rent to readvertise, despite the fact that they would have had to start that only 2-3 weeks away anyway. They have since back down on the re-advertising fee once I explained I had contacted the Tenancy Union, and that the Tenancy Act does not allow such costs. Our final inspection was last week, and we passed it – yet they are refused to release the bond. We have since submitted this to the Office of Regulatory Services. They believe they can keep this until a new tenant is found – despite the Tenancy Act not stipulating they can do this.

As well as all of this, they have used scare tactics, threatened us and continue to try and intimidate us. They have contravened at least 8 of the clauses under their code of conduct.

I have read numerous posts about this particular real estate on here – and want to know if anyone has had success with fair trading and the tribunal, as the more people who have made complaints, the better chances of them investigating.

What’s Your opinion?

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42 Responses to
Real Estates Bullying Ways
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bleebleeblee 12:38 pm 24 Feb 13

tuco said :

bleebleeblee said :

m_ratt said :

TheDancingDjinn said :

And there is no justification to ripping someone off, just because they happen to own more than one home.

For goodness sake, the owner is not getting or going to get ripped off.

A tenant is entitled to end a lease early. Provisions exist in the Residential Tenancies Act for this situation.

The owner is entitled to claim compensation from the tenant for the damages they suffer (lost income). However, the owner (and their agent) MUST take action to MINIMISE their loss (attempt to find another tenant).

Ending a lease 6 weeks early is not the end of the world. The owner will not be out of pocket, providing they and their agent fulfil their responsibilities in minimising (reasonably avoid) the damages.

A property manager should be professional enough (chortle) to cope with their responsibilities without becoming unreasonable.

The Standard Terms are quite clear:
“Notice of intention to vacate by tenant
84 (1) If the tenant serves a notice of intention to vacate and vacates the premises in accordance with the notice, the tenancy terminates on the date of vacating the premises.
(2) On receiving a notice of intention to vacate, the lessor may—
(a) accept the notice and accept that the tenancy ends on the date nominated in the notice; or
(b) apply to the tribunal for confirmation of the tenancy agreement, an order for compensation or both. “

At the date the tenancy ends, rent outstanding (to that date) can be deducted from the Bond. If no rent is outstanding to that date, and no damages to the property require repair, the bond should be refunded.

If ACAT is to make a compensation order this would be payable by the tenant, not deductible from a bond refund.

OP should apply under Division 3.4 for release of the bond money, and leave Badenoch to make fools of themselves in disputing.

yes, this.

A succinct statement bleebleeblee. Perhaps you could give some detail about which part of “this” you feel so positive about? I realise your post is effective in its brevity, but there’s always a little more room on the internet if you really try.

sure, tuco, if it’s important to you to have things explained nice and clearly in full sentences. i agree with everything m_ratt said about rights and obligations of tenants in relation to breaking leases. Great advice for the OP i think. I also agree there’s no need for anyone to get too worked up about property owners being “ripped off” by tenants who don’t want to pay money unless they are legally obligated to.

bleebleeblee 12:34 pm 24 Feb 13

Leiulu said :

Just received a notification about unpaid rent:

“Our records indicate that your rent is only paid to 13/02/2013, this makes you $2500 in arrears. We have checked the records of your payments and it is unusual for you to be in a position of arrears with your payments. You are required to pay all outstanding rent within 7 days of the date of service of this notice. If you pay all outstanding rent within 7 days no further action will be taken at this time and the tenancy will continue. “

WTF? What part of having completed the final inspection and handing the keys back did they miss exactly??

yuck. maybe they are just hopeless and forgot to hit a button in excel – or maybe they are hopeful you’ve got spare thousands you don’t minding over. either way, right now it seems all you can do is wait and see what they do about your application for bond return. Good luck and let us know what happens.

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