March 2016, Brisbane Queensland
What makes Real Estate Agencies cheat? Human beings who derive pleasure from such habits.
Many people who set out to lease a home through Real Estate Agents in Queensland [if not all of Australia] must be aware of the pitfalls that will be there along the way. Many Real Estate Agents have long spent much time working out how best to depart tenants from their hard earned cash, especially where said cash can benefit the agent and it's workers. Here on this Blog I will name and shame Agents that have been found wanting in their operations and also give advise on whom can and cannot be be trusted in the shameless tenant bashing that is condoned by certain Government unfunded departments and probably Governments themselves.
Oh, by the way, we must not forget to say hi to the soon-to-be sorted-out cheats. Hi Rebecca, Hi Liz, Hi Stephanie, Hi Nicole Hi Kelly and Hi to your loyal supporters that assist you in your cheating game. Your turn is soon coming to a head and I hope that you will enjoy your holidays. You cannot produce and present fraudulent documents into a public tribunal without eventually being caught, even with the support of an on-side tribunal crew of JP's and would-be lawyers that are learning to practice their deceiving ways. The moment you get your ill-gotten gains, you will become frauds and will have committed a criminal act per Section 253 of the criminal code, I will then pursue you through every nook and cranny that your dirty little personages try to hide and I will also disrobe those who prevail among the legal fraternity. If you think that collusion will protect you then think again, for cheating the Australian public via Bond monies, it's interest and by using fraudulent invoices to gain extra funds for the rotten multi home investors you represent, will not remain in vogue for much longer. Yes I also believe that the press hide these stories because of the advertising funds paid by Real Estate Agents and that the unfunded bodies that are supposed to watch out for cheats such as you who are now on the wrong side, are also involved in assisting you to defraud tenants in any way because of the amounts paid by this industry for protection against "bad tenants" whilst tarring any tenant with the same brush. For the occasional "Good Real Estate Agent", remember that you too will be tarred with the same brush when the truth of the bad comes out.
RENTING OR LEASING A HOME FROM AN AGENT
When taking the first step in leasing or renting a home from a Real Estate Agent, it must be remembered that during the tenancy, anything that goes wrong will be blamed on you the tenant unless it can be shown to be general wear and tear. Some Agents will re-arrange invoices from even four or five years previous to make it look like they have had to spend big money after your tenancy, especially if you are taking them to a tribunal.
So what should we do to make sure that we are kept safe from greedy money hungry owners and Agents?
WRITE DOWN EVERYTHING.
Write down everything about the house you are about to lease, skip nothing for the Agency will have written reports on both inside and outside. Make sure that you include all in the entry report that you give to the Agent and make sure that you take your time as every day something new will appear. Remember that to the Real Estate Industry, you are an enemy, you will notice that from the moment that you settle into your new residence, that they will change your property manager from that "nice, sweet thing" to Adolf Hitler's mother.
Once you have made the decision to lease the home you have chosen, you must take an entry report and go around the house noting everything and above all, photographing each and every section and corner of the home inside and out.Every nook and cranny must be photographed and every scratch and tear should be noted. Take particular notice of the carpets and if possible have a specialist note their condition at the time you enter and eventually leave. Report everything that does not work as it should and note who your property manager is whilst making sure that you have a witness to all that is said while the property manager is there at entry, inspections and on your exit. In other words, make sure that you trust nobody, even if the property manager is the most beautiful person in the world, they are there to bust you wide open financially so do not trust anyone.
Lawns and Gardens
For some reason,lawns are considered the duty of the tenant, it is he who must pay the $100.00 per month to look after the Garden or to do it himself. This is tantamount to being both Lessee and unemployed Gardener and is something that should NOT be paid by the tenant. Upkeep of Lawns and Hedges is truly the duty of the home owner or the Agent. Most lessees now work full time and have little enough spare time to themselves without having to ac5t as Gardener for the owner. If you are going to lease a home, make sure that your budget includes the excess for gardens or negotiate with the Agent to get $20.00 per week off the rent, most rents already include that amount so do not be afraid to attack the Agent on this the Gardening section. One way out of having to look after Lawns is to have them poisoned and then a month or two before leaving, reseed the lawns. That way you will not have to buy a lawn mower to mow a lawn that does not belong to you. Before leasing, tell the Agent that you do not want the lawn and that you will poison it until you are ready to move on, it is your right to not have to do gardening and remember that the Hedges ARE the duty of the owner.
Real Estate agents can and will produce photographs taken four or five years previous to show how wonderful a house was before you moved in and will produce photographs from previous bard times when you were nowhere near that property, to show how rough you were with the home.
How can this be done [you may ask] when photographs are dated? Well, many Real Estate Agents have a simple trick to cover this, they simply run the photograph onto the computer and then erase the date and enter the date they wish applied in it's place. This is a common practice with those who would cheat and defraud.
Yes there are tenants that mess up homes and cause problems for home owners and Agents but Insurance Companies take care of damaged houses and when someone enters the Rooming or Leasing arena, they [like all other] must take their losses just as Hoteliers and Motel owners do when they rent their properties out. Sadly, the Real Estate Industry tars everyone with the same brush and all tenants are fair game when it comes to gaining finance from said tenants.
Good tenants are smart tenants and smart tenants trust nobody in business. All Real Estate Agents are there to take money off you in any way that they can. so do NOT go into any agreement unprepared or trusting. The Industry in Australia is in a putrid state when Agents are able to pass fraudulent documents through QTAC and other Government bodies without investigation simply because it is not the job of tribunals to delve into evidence, it is their job to simply scan the material and then pass judgement in favor of who has the better prepared evidence.
ONCE IN THE HOME
Now that you have settled into the home you are leasing, you must make a note of everything that goes wrong with the house and demand that repairs or upgrades be made as soon as things show signs of needing repair. If the Agent or owner refuses to have the repairs done, contact RTA and make that biased group do something for the money they are taking from bond interest. If nothing is done, keep reporting it to people like tenants Union. Keep careful note of the condition of the carpets and paintwork and make sure that the garden is looked after each month. Remember that the Real Estate Agent must be considered a cheat who will rip you off as soon as look at you, he is an enemy to a tenant and can be considered nothing less. He has the support of Government legal bodies and can never be thought of as a friend. Agents have brought their occupation into disrepute by the way they are dealing with good people, the treat all tenants as total enemy and now are dictatorial rather than decent.
STAND OVER MERCHANTS
Be watchful for the stand over merchant Agents, they mostly train women to do their dirty work and many will appear as if they spent their younger days as guards in prison camps. They will try to overpower you with statements such as "Gardening is your duty, you have leased the whole property and the garden must be kept neat by you". This is fallacy, gardens are the responsibility of the owner, you cannot be made responsible for what grows there and if they try to state that it is your responsibility then a little weed poison should make life much easier for you. Seriously though, the garden is the owners responsibility just as the weathering of the house is his domain, so too are the surrounds. Read your RTA rules and stipulate before entering in to an agreement, that you are not a gardener.
RTA AND TENANTS UNION
Both of the above named groups are supposed to be unbiased and are supposed to be advisory groups for tenants that have problems with landlords or Real Estate Agents. Both groups became unfunded by Government during the Campbell Newman era and this can only mean one thing, that they are being paid by someone. Both relied on Bond interest for their wages and I believe that advice given by these parties while they were unfunded, became very biased toward the Real Estate Industry. As with almost all Ombudsmen and consumer groups, the Government stopped funding and the Industries connected took over the reins. Trusting anyone to assist you now is tantamount to suicide so if you have something that needs doing legally, do it yourself with a lawyer or you might find that your work is being delayed to a point where you cannot retrieve the situation.
TRIBUNALS [QCAT ETC]
I do believe that QCAT is an independent body under the jurisdiction of the Queensland Attorney General but is perhaps also reliant on the interest from the Bond monies held by the RTA.
If this is so, perhaps that is why they have Justices of the Peace acting in the place of a magistrate. This lowers the integrity of the tribunal because these people can come from any walk of life to gain a JP-ship and are much more likely to be influenced toward where the money comes from. I will also talk more on this subject as we continue along the path toward decency and honor. If you are being charged for something not of your doing and take the Agent to QCAT, you will be on the back foot because QCAT, Tenants Union, R.T.A, and any other unfunded "help mate" will not be in your corner.
One case springs to mind where a pensioner was forced into regular rental housing rather than a pensioner unit, sadly it was a @body corporate unit where the rest were owners and did not like a non-owner among them. This led to a bit of flack now and then and the pensioner decided to leave. The Agent had been properly primed by the body corporate and the pensioner was subjected to some odd nastiness. He asked that the Agent use their own cleaner to Bond clean he two bedroom unit and moved out. He kept a close check on everything and expected to get all of his bond back. Not so, the Agent had their cleaner charge $550.00 for the two bedroom one kitchen/lounge and another $200.00 for pest control. That was unheard of in 2011 and yet the Agent got away with overcharge and probably used cheap one person cleaners and not the professional cleaners they claim to use.
I will be adding more and nastier cases as time goes by, do not worry, every day a new case of fraud occurs in this industry. I will also be naming those who are guilty of committing criminal acts by producing false and misleading documents to tribunals and I will also go after anyone involved with tribunals who have not performed their work with honesty, integrity and in an investigative manner. It is no good stating that "We looked at the evidence" without making sure that said evidence was truthful in every way. If awards are made against people by dishonest Real Estate Agents then the penalty for that should be dismissal from holding posts in said tribunals. Everyone must work for the money they are paid.
Remember, trust nobody, not even Government departments for there is $1.2 billion or more held in trust in Queensland alone and there are three groups after it, Agents, proxy unfunded Government departments, and yourself. Even those that are supposed to look after the Tenants are funded by Interest from the bonds, put yourself in their place, who would you support in a tribunal fight between tenant and Agent when the Agent has your pay in their pocket?
Please email me if you have been badly done by with Bond or other repair charges that you know to be fictitious by email firstname.lastname@example.org
THE ABOVE MATERIAL DOES NOT PROCLAIM THE ENTIRE REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY AS BEING DISHONEST BUT IT DOES SHOW THAT THIS TYPE OF CORPORATE CRIME IS ON THE RISE, THOSE WHO ARE INVOLVED KNOW WHO I AM TALKING ABOUT.