Many people assume that tenancy laws work solely in favour of tenants, but did you know that they protect landlords as well?
When it comes to being a landlord, there are few things more important than familiarising yourself with your own rights and responsibilities as well as your tenant’s. Doing so will help ensure that you are operating under the ethical and legal guidelines mandated by your local government. Learning more about landlord and tenant rights and responsibilities will not only save you a headache (in the long run), but it might also save you from a trip to the tribunal!
There are many government websites available to help you learn more about being a landlord, but for now, here’s a beginner’s guide to your rights and responsibilities as a landlord.
Yes, your property is someone’s home, but it’s also your livelihood and source of income. The government recognises that and offers you certain rights as a landlord that will help you protect your property and yourself.
Choosing a tenant
You have the right to choose (from a pool of applicants) the tenant whom you deem most suitable for your property. However, that doesn’t give you a free card to discriminate against applicants based on their marital status, sexual orientation, religion or any other protected status.
You have the right to request rent (whether weekly, monthly, or fortnightly) and have a right to rental income as stated in the terms of the lease that you and the tenant have signed. You also have the right to increase rent – but do so wisely!
You have the right to request a bond from your tenants to be held against damages, theft, or neglect.
In extreme cases, you have the right to end a tenancy. It is important to know the laws in your area regarding this – for example, what notification is required and when.
Working as a landlord is no picnic; you will have a number of responsibilities that must be taken care of in a timely and efficient manner. Some of your responsibilities as a landlord will include:
- Keeping abreast of tenancy laws and local legislation.
- Maintaining the exterior of any structures and common areas.
- Installing and maintaining any appliances that come with the building.
- Responding promptly to requests for repairs.
- Providing security for your tenants.
- Paying any and all charges, levies, premiums, rates, taxes and mortgages for your property.
- Maintaining good communication with your tenants.
- Keeping your tenants notified of their responsibilities and rights.
- Documenting and storing financial records safely and correctly.
- Complying with safety laws, such as fire compliance, among others.
And remember, this is only a portion of your responsibilities as a landlord! Don’t fret if it feels overwhelming – we promise you’re not the only one who thinks so.
Don’t do it alone – invest in a property manager
There are many landlords just like you who have too many responsibilities to keep up with and not enough time to do so, and this creates additional stress and pressure – which makes your job even more difficult.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it may be a good idea to engage a property manager to assist with things like finding new tenants, collecting rent, handling tenant issues and more. Property managers can help you stay abreast of any legislative changes you need to be aware of so that you can mitigate mistakes and free up more time to do your job.
When it comes to finding the best property manager, we’ve got you covered. Reach out today for assistance or advice – we’re only a phone call away!