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Shame, Canberra Real Estates, Shame

By Unikwa - 26 June 2013 41

We are a family of 3 – 2 adults and 1 child – plus an elderly cat.

Over the past 3 and a bit weeks, we have applied for 8 rental properties with no success. In one case, the Agent failed to do due diligence in checking with the owner as to whether they would accept pets. Turns out not, so a couple (yep, 2 adults) were placed in a brand new 4×2 house, across the road from a park and open play fields, whilst this family got passed over.

On at least 5 other occasions, we have been told by Agents that we did not get the property as we do not work for Defence or the APS. Just remember folks – we work in the support of these businesses and without us (and others in less glamorous positions) their cleaning and retail services won’t happen.

We came here with high hopes after I was accepted into University but it looks like we will have to move yet again as we are unable to remain in our current rental and obviously cannot secure other rental accommodation. Our daughter has already been to 5 different schools in 4 years (yep go ahead and put us down, that’s fine). I will have to give up my dream of finally getting an education and my husband will have to give up his employment as very soon we will be homeless.

Oh and thanks to the property managers who didn’t even have the courtesy to advise us that we had missed out on our latest application – rather just re-advertising it is obviously good enough for you.

What’s Your opinion?


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41 Responses to
Shame, Canberra Real Estates, Shame
Mysteryman 3:44 pm 26 Jun 13

arescarti42 said :

Something doesn’t add up here.

Turning down potential tenants is not something property managers can afford to do in the current market, so the fact that they’re rejecting your application flat out in favor of re-advertising suggests to me that they think you’re a completely unsuitable tenant.

You need to figure out why that is. Is it your presentation? Income/ability to pay the rent? Do you have no/bad references? Are you not filling out the applications properly?

The fact that a couple was favored over your family is unsurprising, children and pets make messes, which is not what a landlord wants in their brand new house. Try applying for properties where the landlord is less likely to care (e.g. older houses in poorer condition), and you might have more success.

I hope that helps, and good luck.

I agree with you. I’ve been looking recently and for the first time in years, I had real estate agents calling me back and asking me if I’d like to make an offer on the properties I inspected. Many of them willing to be negotiable with prices and leasing arrangements.

Consider the advice that arescarti42 has given you. Also, if finding a place to live is as important as you say it is, then maybe you should get rid of the cat. It’s a better alternative than going without a place to live.

OpenYourMind 3:42 pm 26 Jun 13

We rent out a property and manage the rental ourselves. My reading of the market is that it is definitely tougher to rent out and easier for potential tenants. We use an unusual strategy of picking people with pets as they are much more likely to stay for a while as it’s tough to find other rentals that are ok with pets. Young boisterous kids might be a little offputting – I certainly know how rough ours are on our house.

As arescarti42 said, there’s probably a reason why you are getting knocked back on rentals. As private landlords, these are some of the things we look for:
Some kind of income stability
Some kind of rental history
References that check out
A genuine approachable manner
Bothering to fill out the application with some attention to detail – if the person can’t be bothered to fill out a form, they probably won’t care much for cleaning etc.

Then we’d ask, does everything add up? Do I think these people are going to look after our house? Would they be reasonable if there was a dispute to settle? Essentially we ask ourselves would we be happy having these people live in our rental and will they stay for the long haul thereby minimising empty periods and re-rental hassle.

pink little birdie 3:31 pm 26 Jun 13

I looked at about 8 properties recently, applied for two (one last week and one this week) and got the second one . We would have applied for more but you know effort… (the real estate agent wasn’t at a few).

Group house – 1 public servant, 1 phd student and 1 unemployed… no pets.

We were being careful about what houses we applied for though, we had several criteria.

FioBla 3:20 pm 26 Jun 13

1. Seriously? Real estate agents were recently rated 3rd from last of the most trusted professions.

They’re real estate agents! Whaddyawant?

2. They work for the owner, not for the not-yet-even-a tenant.

http://youtu.be/M0QxQoOInV0

kumadude 3:15 pm 26 Jun 13

I am in no way attempting to be insulting, as per my average, but Captains Flat is a 15-20 minute drive from Queanbeyan and the folk out there should be more than comfortable in renting out a 1000 sq metre property for a low cost. It is a beautiful area with great scenery and wildlife, they should be well accommodating to your needs.

Grimm 2:23 pm 26 Jun 13

Dork said :

arescarti42 your post is sooo unhelpful. So people are expected to live in crap housing because they have children/pets?

Any issues are what bond is for! They should only care that you are paying the rent on time.

People who haven’t invested their hard earned money into a property always come up with this nonsense.

The post was helpful and truthful.

Bond does not even come close to covering damages in many cases, and the system for recouping costs from tenants is severely broken. It can take years to get a judgement, and even longer to wring blood from that stone.

Understand that property investment is a business. We don’t do it as a community service. In business, you do what you can to mitigate risk. People with pets and young children are a risk. People without steady incomes (including contractors) are a risk. Life’s just not fair sometimes.

arescarti42 2:03 pm 26 Jun 13

what_the said :

Canberra has something like less than 1% rental availability. Agents have been picky for the ten last years I was renting there. They can afford to give it to the most qualified candidate. I remember 40 people applying for one house. It’s just how it is and it takes many people way longer than three weeks.

That used to be the case, but things have changed massively in the last 12 months. The vacancy rate has more than doubled over the last 12 months from 0.7% to 1.5% and rising. Properties coming on to the rental market at 10-15% below what they last rented for is not at all unusual, and I’ve seen some that have been reduced in price by well in excess of 20% in order for them to rent.

The demand just isn’t there at current prices, so tenants are in a much, much better position to secure accommodation than they have been in a long time.

Dork said :

arescarti42 your post is sooo unhelpful. So people are expected to live in crap housing because they have children/pets?

Any issues are what bond is for! They should only care that you are paying the rent on time.

It’s not fair, but it is what it is.

Reasonable wear and tear cannot be claimed from the bond, and the reasonable wear and tear component is likely to be higher with more people, pets and children etc.

Dork 12:31 pm 26 Jun 13

I applied for about 20 a year and a half ago and looked at about 20 more before we got one.

We were told too young and not enough references. How are you supposed to get rental references if no one will allow you to rent?
I’m a public servant and that wasn’t enough.

arescarti42 your post is sooo unhelpful. So people are expected to live in crap housing because they have children/pets?

Any issues are what bond is for! They should only care that you are paying the rent on time.

farout 12:05 pm 26 Jun 13

arescarti42 said :

Turning down potential tenants is not something property managers can afford to do in the current market.

+1.

Or owners for that matter. Each day that a property is un-tenanted, the owner loses money.

Look for properties that have been up for rent for a while, or anything that says “Available Now’. Maybe offer 5 or 10 bucks above the asking rate, or offer to sign a 2 year lease, if it will save you the cost and trouble of relocating back interstate.

what_the 12:03 pm 26 Jun 13

Canberra has something like less than 1% rental availability. Agents have been picky for the ten last years I was renting there. They can afford to give it to the most qualified candidate. I remember 40 people applying for one house. It’s just how it is and it takes many people way longer than three weeks.

nyssa1976 11:45 am 26 Jun 13

I have to agree with the OP.

I’ve applied for 18 properties. I’ve now stopped. I’ve had the same job for 11 years, my partner for 6 years. We have 4 children between us (2 live FT, 2 live PT). Our personal referees gave us glowing references.

We don’t find out that we’re unsuccessful as Property Managers don’t have to let you know nor do they have to tell you why you ‘failed’ despite asking.

Our problem? Sticking to the Tenancy Act when we went without heat for SEVEN weeks last winter (-6.7 nights folks) due to a broken ducted heating system that almost burnt the house down. Dealing with no less than FOUR trespass issues by the owner – he doesn’t knock, he just comes right on the property and with no notification. So we know it’s our property manager. We have completed a Notice to Remedy and spoken to the Tenants Union etc.

We have until September, with an early leave agreement (in writing) but a friend is now looking to rent us their property privately because of all this drama.

Ironically, some of the property’s we applied for were less per week than what we are paying now….

gooday 11:23 am 26 Jun 13

Check out Distinct Property Management (www.distinctpm.com.au) most of their properties will take pets and you can see this on the listings page. Providing you don’t have a poor rental history and can afford the rent you should be OK.

There are a lot of Agents in Canberra who take a blanket ‘No Pets’ position which quite stupid really. I can understand if an owner doesn’t want a Doberman in a small 2 bedroom unit, or a team of pit bulls in a tiny yard – but if a property has an enclosed yard or is suitable why wouldn’t they? I know cats pee and dogs chew stuff, but the tenant is still responsible for getting any damage fixed and a good property manager will make sure they keep on top of this rather than waiting until the tenant goes to vacate to raise any issues.

Sometimes its more about finding the right Agent first and getting them to help you find the right house.

tamara_turbo 10:51 am 26 Jun 13

Hi there

At Luton Properties we advertise on all our listings at http://www.luton.com.au if our Owners will consider pets or not.

I sent your post to the property management team across our 8 offices so please take a look at our website and if you see anything of interest with Team Luton speak the property manager on the ad directly and we can see what we can do to assist you in finding a new home for your family and pets.

Good luck

arescarti42 10:44 am 26 Jun 13

Something doesn’t add up here.

Turning down potential tenants is not something property managers can afford to do in the current market, so the fact that they’re rejecting your application flat out in favor of re-advertising suggests to me that they think you’re a completely unsuitable tenant.

You need to figure out why that is. Is it your presentation? Income/ability to pay the rent? Do you have no/bad references? Are you not filling out the applications properly?

The fact that a couple was favored over your family is unsurprising, children and pets make messes, which is not what a landlord wants in their brand new house. Try applying for properties where the landlord is less likely to care (e.g. older houses in poorer condition), and you might have more success.

I hope that helps, and good luck.

paganava 10:28 am 26 Jun 13

Story of my life. I must have applied for 100’s of private Canberra rentals in my life. Being a single parent it is actually impossible to rent privately in Canberra. My income is too ‘low’ for the affordable housing scheme even though , I have done the math and could afford it easily.
I have been in public housing and had a horrendous dangerous few years and was placed on ‘high needs’ transfer list which is a wait time of 2 years. How 2 years is high needs i don’t know.

I don’t know what we are meant to do in this city , honestly.

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