Archive - Posts from March 2015

Property Inspections

How often is your property being inspected?

A frequent question that I get from new landlords or potential clients is, “How often do you inspect my property?”

This is a question that I welcome and make sure to address as soon as I meet a potential client because it’s important that you know how we go about looking after your property.

I recall when I rented and never saw the property manager during my tenancy. In fact this happened all too often and although this might be a while ago now, sadly this has not always changed.

We complete an initial inspection before the tenancy commences. At this inspection, we take well over 100 photos with our digital camera, of the property and this can increase with the size and condition of the property.  Our aim is to take photographic evidence of any and everything in the property at the time that it is handed over to the tenants. These photos are also backed up with detailed noted comments. Together, these two items act as a record of the condition at the commencement of the tenancy and is referred back to when the tenants vacate.

Once the tenancy commences, under the Residential Tenancy Act, 1997 an agent is permitted to carry out a routine inspection at least three (3) months after a tenancy commences and then six (6) monthly after that.

Our agency practice is to carry out a routine inspection at that three month period. We want to know that the tenant is maintaining the property in the condition that we expect it to be looked after and that there are no obvious issues. We find that this inspection is an intimation of how the tenancy will continue.  The property manager will then send a report, advising you of any issues or simply reporting on a good inspection.  This way, you are kept informed and updated on the condition of your property and the tenancy.  Owners are welcome to attend at a routine inspection. 

During a routine inspection, we will also advise you if we notice any problems in the common area of the building. If yes, we can contact the strata managers (if it is a unit) and raise the maintenance items with them, as strata managers do not carry out inspections of properties. This is important as the condition of the common areas can directly affect the marketability and rental value of your unit.

Finally, when the tenants vacate we attend and carry out a final inspection of the property. We will compare the condition of the property to the comments and photos noted on the ingoing condition report before we finalise the Bond. At this time, we also make notes and take detailed photos of the property as proof of the condition upon exit.

If you have any further questions, regarding property inspections, we invite you to contact our leasing team.

Posted on Sunday, 01 March 2015
by Rachel Thomas in Latest News

Carbon monoxide testing

It's important to have any gas heaters tested for carbon monoxide emissions.

With the weather beginning to get cooler and the first signs of autumn starting to appear, it’s a good time to think about having any gas heaters in your investment property tested for CO.  In Victoria, 82% of households use gas appliances for heating.*

Do I have to get my gas heaters tested?

While it is not mandatory in Victoria to have gas heaters tested for carbon monoxide emissions, it is recommended by government and industry bodies that gas heaters should be serviced every two years.  With regular servicing of appliances, the risk can be reduced of CO poisoning by allowing a licensed gasfitter to check for faulty burner operation, flue blockage and other potential hazards. When an appliance fault results in the production of CO, the concentration of CO can build up in the home and can rise to potentially harmful levels. *

You may be familiar with the sad case where in 2010, two boys in country Victoria died from carbon monoxide fumes, released by a faulty gas heater while they slept. Carbon monoxide is undetectable by sight or smell.  

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can include tiredness, shortness of breath, headaches, dizziness, nausea, confusion and chest pain. High levels of carbon monoxide can cause unconsciousness and death.

This service should be considered as part of your risk minimisation strategy for your property.

The service is usually done by either a gas plumber or gas heating specialist who will check for emissions. If the unit is found to be faulty they will disconnect the unit immediately and advise our office. If this should occur, we will consult with you to organise a replacement unit or discuss alternative heating options for the property. We recommend that the service of any gas heaters is done prior to winter, just in case there should be any issues with the heating unit. This gives you some extra time to consider your heating options.


*sourced from "The risk of carbon monoxide poisoning from domestic gas appliances", produced by The Allen Consulting Group May 2012

Posted on Sunday, 01 March 2015
by Rachel Thomas in Latest News

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