Property Management is so much more than just rent collectors.




it’s an unsavory topic, and it’s something we’d all rather avoid, but there are ways to prepare.

don’t fear the reaper: 10 things to do if your tenant dies

it sounds unpalatable, and certainly no one would wish for it, however if a tenant dies in your rental property, there are a number of implications that you should be prepared for.

while landlord insurance can cover you in the event of a tenant’s death, different policies offer varying levels of cover.

“the financial costs vary depending on the situation. there can be direct costs, in terms of lost rent and clean-ups, and indirect costs if a property is slower to re-lease because of the associated stigma. most landlord insurance provides some cover if a tenant dies, although the extent varies depending on your insurer.

“dealing with a family that is grieving can make negotiations around issues like clearing out possessions quite difficult. however, many property investors aren’t in a position where they can afford to lose money indefinitely,” mr. peter detongsaid.

10 tips to bear in mind in the event that a death may occur:

  1. be tactful, sensitive and compassionate in all dealings with the tenant’s family and friends.
  2. contact the next of kin and pay your respects.
  3. ask the next of kin who they would like you to deal with regarding the property.
  4. contact your insurer to ask about your cover and what paperwork is required to make a claim, for example a death certificate or published funeral notice.
  5. if police are involved, liaise with the officer in charge of the investigation as to when access can be expected.
  6. organise a meeting with the person nominated by the next of kin about plans for vacating the property. approach the conversation tactfully.
  7. offer the person contacts for firms who might be able to help pack, sort and store possessions until the family is ready to deal with them.
  8. be sensitive about the timing of any open for inspections or other contact – being mindful of events such as the funeral.
  9. when the property is vacated, clean it, using specialist assistance if necessary, and re-advertise it for lease.
  10. keep all receipts and records to assist in your landlord insurance claim.






“与沉浸在悲伤中的家庭协商善后事宜是一件让人难过的事情。诸如处理物业内死者遗物的问题。但是,我们的业主也不能因此无期限地承受失去租金带来的损失。“ Peter童先生。


1. 与死者的家属交往需要更多的技巧,表示敏感与同情。

2. 与死者最亲近的家属联系,表达您的慰问。

3. 与死者最亲近的家属协商由谁出面与您处理物业内死者遗物的问题。

4. 联系您的保险公司,询问关于保险金数额和索赔需要的文件。如:死亡证明或者报纸上的葬礼卜告。

5. 如果有警察介入调查,联系负责的警官。询问关于物业何时可以继续使用。

6. 安排与家属指定的人员会面,协商物业清场的计划。您一定要非常有技巧的协商。

7. 在家属同意处理前,请一定不要把家属的联系方式透露给搬家公司

8. 您要把握好下一次看房的时机,及其它事宜。一定要时刻记得事件的进展,如何时进行葬礼。

9. 在物业清空后,雇佣专业人员进行清理。继续刊登广告,出租物业。

10. 保留好所有的收据及相关文件以便您能顺利地进行业主保险索赔。


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if an owners corporation changes strata managers, who owns the trust account?

there is no doubt that, the money in the trust account is owned by the owner’s corporation. there is also an argument that, the trust account belongs to the strata manager.

with these completely opposite positions, when the bank is requested to provide information on the trust account, who is entitle to receive the information.

the position by macquarie bank is that the trust account is the property of the agent. Therefore, for privacy reason, they are refusing to release information regarding the trust account on the grounds of privacy.

in other words, the bank holds private information on the owner’s corporation, but is using privacy principles to refuse to give access to information to the owner’s corporation because the agent is the owner of the trust account.

this is an issue we are trying to sort out with fair trading. we will advise readers of the outcome.

this article was written by mr. bailey compton, of leverage australia solicitors.

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mr. peter detong from town & country real estate 理为德地产would like to suggest all property seeker to have their finance a formal pre-approval.

savvy borrowers will want to make sure that the pre-approval is a true indication of what they can purchase.

mr. detong explains that some will provide pre-approval within a 48 hour turnaround, while others can take longer. you will need to be ready in advance, especially if there is an enticing auction coming up.

“borrowers can slow down the process if they don’t have all of their paperwork in order, which means the lender will go back and fourth with the applicant to complete the application,” he explains.

what paperwork you need?

pretend you’re going for the final mortgage discussion, and replicate the paperwork you will need at that point. the more you can provide, the less back-and-forth there will be and the more comprehensive and accurate your pre-approval will be.

what you need to bring:

  • copies of your bank statements
  • savings history for the past three to six months (minimum)
  • 100 points of id
  • any proof of assets (eg council rates for any property you own)
  • employment verification and payslips
  • tax returns (particularly if self-employed)
  • other proof of income (such as rental income proof through a lease document)

with these details, and some general information around whether you’re buying new or looking to build, the lender will then look to verify the information. they will undertake a credit check and they’ll also look to ensure there’s nothing that could change your situation, such as reduced hours.

how useful is pre-approval?

it can be a powerful tool to have, and if you have time it’s worth getting pre-approval done, however you still would not necessarily want to enter into an unconditional contract. a valuation on the property you are looking at, as well as the final say-so in regards to achieving finance will likely both be needed. this can mean that, despite having the pre-approval, you may still not be able to purchase the property.

pre-approval can also help bring up any problems you hadn’t prepared for. perhaps you can’t borrow as much as you had been hoping due to a bad mark on your credit file you hadn’t prepared for. either way, this can quickly alert you before you get yourself stuck into a contract.

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concerns that one state government may change stamp duty legislation in the upcoming budget have sparked warnings from the industry.

according to real estate institute of western australia (reiwa) president david airey, pressure on the state government to cut costs and raise revenue may cause increased stamp duty costs and the removal of stamp duty exemptions for first home buyers.

“the property market in wa is only just stabilising after several volatile years, while current reiwa data indicates a market downturn for the second half of this year.

“it’s critical that current policy settings remain in place and property taxes are not increased, distorting a fragile market,” mr Airey said.

mr airey labelled the stamp duty exemption, introduced in 2007, as “extraordinarily successful” for keeping the property market afloat.

“cost of living and housing affordability is much tougher in wa than it is in other states, but removing the stamp duty impost from first home buyers saves most of them around $14,000 and helps them get into a home of their own.

“in combination with low interest rates first home buyers have flourished in wa, but the signs are that this is now trending downwards and it would be devastating if they soon get hit with stamp duty,” mr airey said.

speaking with town & country real estate理为德地产director mr. peter detong童工said that even the top end of the market will be hit hard if first home buyer exemptions are removed.

“stamp duty is the number one deterrent to real estate transactions,” mr. detong童 said.

“we transact over million in property each year, but we still talk to clients who would prefer to renovate rather than relocate because of the costs of stamp duty.”

while he believes raising stamp duty would be an unlikely event, other states have removed or reduced the aid given to first home buyers.

“it’s a very real threat to the market if the exemption is removed, even at the $1 million-plus end of the market,” mr detong童said.

“it’s like a ripple effect. when demand for the lower end of the market drops, it flows on to the next tier of upgraders and investors, until the whole market feels it.”

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you may have heard about the heartbleed vulnerability, which has affected websites on a global scale. while there has been no evidence of breaches in security at town & country real estate 理为德地产website, we are taking the opportunity to remind you of the importance of protecting your security online. as a general security measure, it is recommended that you regularly change your passwords for all the internet services you use.

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valuations are at the heart of property investment – particularly when it comes to getting finance, or being refinanced, with a lender.

you might also just be asking ‘what is my home worth?’ and a valuation may appear to be the natural way to answer this question.

Valuations: Five must know facts

there are also many reasons why you’d want to get an independent valuation – peter detong from town & country real estate says it pays to be aware of what is involved.

here are some ‘must know’ elements of valuations:

1) it’s not an appraisal

2) they’re not an exact science

3) there are multiple types of valuation

4) comparables are heavily relied upon

5) you can assist the valuer

tips for those wanting to get the best from a valuer:

  • provide them a list of comparable sales (potentially inside the same project, as well as some that are not). while not all valuers will use them, some will.
  • apply for finance six months before completion, not six days and if you find the valuation comes in low it gives you time to get a third and a fourth.
  • attain your own valuation, using a valuer that is on your bank’s panel of valuers.
  • ask to see a soft valuation so you can check the comparables used and the comments made.
  • bear in mind that the valuer often has a different valuation for mortgage purposes as opposed to sale purposes.

    but mainly:

  • do your research beforehand.  go out and look at 100 or even 10 before you make a purchase decision. if you’ve done your research you should be confident it will value up.


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while owner occupiers tend to have their insurance policies cut out for them (protect your home, yourself, and your stuff), landlords don’t have it quite so easy.

how much protection are you obliged to provide for your tenants? and how do you protect yourself?

your exposure to risk as a landlord comes from two sources: potential damage to your property and assets, and damage to your tenants. thankfully, standard building and contents insurance and landlord’s insurance will cover you should either of those situations eventuate.

most landlord insurance policies will cover damage made by people external to your property. so if your rental property is vandalised by strangers, your landlord policy will most likely cover the repairs. but if your tenant or their guest takes a texta to the walls, the bond is your best bet. if you feel your bond doesn’t provide enough cover, some insurers also provide extra tenant protection on top of your landlord insurance, which can cover malicious damage by your tenants or their guests, theft, or the loss of rental income if your tenants default on your rent.

in general, your lease agreement will override your insurance policy. most basic landlord insurance policies state that the insurer will not cover fixtures and fittings that the tenant is responsible for as part of your tenancy agreement. if you are considering landlord insurance, make sure you go through your prospective policy agreement with one eye on your lease.

some landlord insurance policies will also reimburse you for lost rental income should your property become uninhabitable due to accidental damage.

the health and wellbeing of your tenants is your other main concern as a landlord. as the owner of a leased property, you may be legally liable for accidents that happen within that site. while your legal liability cover will differ depending on your policy and provider, in effect it works like public liability insurance.

if someone is injured in your property and successfully sues you, your standard landlord’s insurance will provide $10 million worth of cover to help you pay for this. while $10 million may seem like a staggering number, consider the potential costs for disability support your tenant may have to pay if they are permanently injured on your property. bear in mind, landlord insurance will usually not cover the costs of any legal proceedings themselves. 

what protection your landlord insurance policy should offer:

  • damage from animals to the interior of your property, not including your tenants’ pets or vermin and pests
  • the effects of natural disasters or fire
  • sudden and unexpected impacts, like falling trees or cars colliding with your property. note, this normally won’t cover any damage that happens as a result of contracted works.
  • vandalism and theft by someone who didn’t have the consent of you or your tenants to enter the property
  • your legal liability for claims arising from accidents onsite which result in bodily harm or death of someone on the property, not including you or your family.
  • your legal liability for claims where your tenants’ or their guests’ property was damaged in the rental

before you decide to become a landlord, make sure you are adequately covered. australia has a competitive insurance market, with plenty providing landlord coverage, so take the time to shop around for comprehensive and cost-effective policy. if you aren’t sure what level of coverage is best for you, your property manager can give you some guidance.

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complying with your legal obligations is crucial, regardless of whether you use a property manager or self manage your properties, said from mr. peter detong 童.

with this in mind, we’re sharing 10 ‘must know’ things from the residential tenancies act in new south wales and encouraging you to provide your own.

10 things you need to know about NSW's Residential Tenancies Act

  1. that the following terms are not allowed in your agreement:
    a requirement for the tenant to have the carpet professionally cleaned, or to pay for the cost of this service, at the end of the tenancy.
    this may not apply if the tenant has pets. that the tenant needs any sort of specific insurance.
    that any rebate may occur if the tenant does not breach the agreement, and, on the other hand, that a tenant is liable to pay all the remaining rent, increased rent or a penalty if they breach the agreement.
  2. your tenant has anti-discrimination rights:
    while this can be a broad topic, you must not discriminate against tenants on the basis of your tenant’s race, religion, sexual oritenation, age or any disabilities. discrimination can be seen as broad, and may include undertaking extra inspections due to a tenant’s age.
  3. pet bonds are not allowed. 
  4. you do not have to allow sub-letting:
    if a tenant is sub-letting without your consent, that is having another resident in the house pay rent to themselves, this is against the agreement.
  5. tenants must be provided 60 days of written notice for a rent increase:
    when ‘written notice’ is mentioned, you must allow time for postage if this is your intended method. It is recommended that landlords and property managers keep clear records of when notices have been sent, to avoid a breach.
  6. the property must be in a reasonable state of cleanliness, and it must be habitable, when provided to the tenant:
    while this is a debatable point, it’s largely worth remembering the state of a property you would be happy to inhabit, and emulate this. Remember to focus on making the property compliant, safe and clean.
  7. tenants are required to report the need for repairs and maintenance:
    they must also not make material additions or changes, such as the alteration of locks or security devices, or fly screens, without the consent of the landlord.
  8. there is a limit on the amount of bond you can charge a tenant:
    in new south wales, this limit is up to four week’s of the rent you have agreed to pay. as a landlord or property manager, a bond lodgement form is required to be provided to the tenant.
  9. a landlord must tell tenants ‘material facts’:
    these material facts include whether the home has been subject to serious flooding or bushfire in the past five years, if there are any health/safety risks or if the home has been the scene of a violent crime in the past five years.
  10. a tenant should be provided with a condition report.:
    the tenant should be provided two copies, one of which is for their records, the other is for the property manager. they should be given seven days in which to complete and return this form.

do you have any “must know” facts from the residential tenancies act? share yours with us.

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不要把所有的鸡蛋放在同一个篮子里, 坚持投资地点和投资类型的多元化


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there are a number of things that are a big tick for lenders when it comes to home loan applications. many of them are simple changes you can make, but the result can be extremely rewarding.

1.    good repayment history
on march 12 2014, australia changed to a positive credit reporting system which means that lenders are now able to access more information on your credit report. these changes were implemented so lenders can get a better insight into a person’s financial position to ensure they would be able to meet the mortgage repayments.
one of the significant changes is that lenders can see the past 24 months of your repayment history. so, if you are able to meet your bill repayments on time, lenders may consider you a good risk and offer you a more competitive home loan.

2.    paperwork is organised
missing paperwork can often slow down the application process and can be a concern if you are on a tight deadline for purchasing a property. there is a certain amount documentation required by lenders in order to verify your information. requirements can vary from lender to lender, but the required paperwork usually includes: credit card statements, bank statements, pay slips and payment summaries.
the best way to ensure you include all of the right paperwork is to speak with your lender about what is needed before submitting your application.
3.    minimal debt
too much debt can affect your borrowing power as lenders need to be able to see that you have enough money to pay off your mortgage. if you can only just afford your current financial commitments, lenders may be wary to let you take on mortgage.
before applying for a home loan, try to cut down as many expenses as you can. Ongoing commitments such as gym memberships, credit cards and pay tv can affect your borrowing power, so the less you have, the better. also, by getting rid of these extra expenses, you can use the surplus money to save a larger deposit, which will help you avoid other fees such as lenders mortgage insurance.

4.    disclosure
you may assume that lenders will only assess the information you tell them, but that is not the case. lenders have access to even more information now that the new credit reporting system has been implemented, so there is a good chance they will find any defaults or other financial information that you do not disclose. if they do uncover information you have not disclosed, not only could it slow down the application process, but lenders may be more cautious to offer you a competitive home loan.

5.    strong employment history
your income is extremely important when it comes to applying for a home loan. lenders need to see that you can afford the mortgage repayments and are in a secure employment position. It is a requirement for most lenders that you have been at the same job for at least 6 months and you are not on a probationary period. It can be extremely risky if you decide to change jobs just before you apply for a home loan. It may be best to wait until after you have been approved before changing.

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