I Can Find A Tenant Myself I Don’t Need An Agent? REALLY…? (Case study)

You’re prob­ably ask­ing your­self “Mmm…Will I save money put­ting a ten­ant in myself” In the short term maybe, but in the long run your tak­ing a gamble on one of your biggest assets. I can under­stand land­lords try­ing to save money, as costs are always going up and DIY is all the rage.


I was talk­ing with our Prop­erty Man­age­ment Super­visor Julie Collins and she said “What we find is that people say they will put in a friend and start advert­ising on Gumtree” There is noth­ing wrong with this but land­lords don’t have the tools that agents have and go on only instinct or face value.


Now going with your instinct is a skill you pick up being in prop­erty man­age­ment after sev­eral years but we ALWAYS do our ref­er­ence checks regardless.


You would think that at face value a police officer in Seven Hills would be a good instinct and an easy choice for a ten­ant and one you would not be con­cerned about.


Well this is exactly what happened and it’s not an isol­ated incid­ent. See what grinds my gears is that some land­lords don’t think it through when try­ing to save money. Being a landlord/agent myself, I had a look at man­aging it myself and not though our office. At least I researched all the laws and eval­u­ated how much of my life/hassle it would take.


Here were my thoughts on rent­ing out my granny flat in Seven Hills not though our office;


  • If I found a ten­ant myself, I may end up hav­ing the prop­erty unten­an­ted for 2 weeks or maybe longer than if you engaged the ser­vices of a good prop­erty man­ager. If you are rent­ing a place for $400 per week and it is unten­an­ted for 2 weeks, that is a cost of $800 that you have incurred as a res­ult of not using a good prop­erty manager.
  • I would not get state­ments for tax pur­poses and the banks so if I wanted to get another invest­ment prop­erty (some banks will not except non prop­erty man­age­ment agency state­ments). I would have to still leg­ally do my paper work anyway.
  • Could end up with a ten­ant that calls about every little issue and also get calls at 2am about the water not work­ing etc (wanted to stay in my nice warm bed), our agency has a 24hr emer­gency phone.
  • I didn’t have access to “Bad ten­ant” data bases only a list of their own good ones.
  • Good cop bad cop. I did not want to get emo­tion­ally attached to the ten­ants and make bad invest­ment decisions. At least I can make the people in my agency have the hard con­ver­sa­tions with the ten­ant when needed e.g. rent arrears, garden­ing, dam­ages, kick­ing them out etc…
  • The man­age­ment fee of $30 per week is tax deduct­ible so it’s only really $17 per week.  I live closely as well, but am “detach­ing” myself from the property.

Even­tu­ally I decided against it. It’s now set and for­get, our prop­erty man­age­ment deals with chas­ing money and repairs and I can have a friendly rela­tion­ship with the tenants.

Now let’s get back to the police officer that trashed a house in Seven Hills that was found on gumtree. Please take note we are happy to work with our land­lords and find them a ten­ant, you can man­age it after we have done all the paper work.


I do not advise it though, not just that I’m try­ing to sell our ser­vices, but it can still end up messy even after all our checks and paper work. At least you would have an ingo­ing inspec­tion report and a law enforce­able lease.


We find many DIY land­lords have “friends” move in. Don’t have a lease. They can­not evict the squat­ters and col­lect the 6 weeks rent owed. This is a very bad situation!


Any­way we ended up tak­ing on this prop­erty after this land­lord real­ised they could not handle deal­ing with this while he went back to china to live. Julie Collins said “we don’t nor­mally take on clean up jobs like these. The ten­ant was 6 weeks behind and it was going to be a lot of work to get it back, not men­tion to dam­ages to the Seven Hills prop­erty”.


Julie’s dili­gence also found the owner was char­ging the full water bill to the ten­ant, not just the usage which is a big no no. We had this cor­rec­ted and many more issues, in fact Julie Collins said “the owner was in breach of Res­id­en­tial Ten­an­cies Act 2010 in so many ways it was not funny!”

Now to the ten­ant side of things, you would think “He is a police officer how bad could he be” Well as Julie was to take over this prop­erty she soon real­ised how much of a night­mare ten­ant he was.

Dining walls Photos of panting Real Estate Agent Lucretia Road Seven Hills NSW 2147 Australia

The land­lord said it was ok to paint a fea­ture wall in a light neut­ral col­our and the ten­ant ended up paint­ing a dark col­our. Later the owner asked him to paint it back in a neut­ral col­our, to which the ten­ant clearly didn’t fin­ish. To find out more about this topic go to this art­icleTen­ants Per­form­ing DIY­Main­ten­ance On Your Prop­erty, Good Idea?



Not sure why but there are plenty of holes in walls


Photos of paint on floor Real Estate Agent Lucretia Road Seven Hills NSW 2147 Australia


My favour­ite photo is a massive pool of paint on the floor



Here is some more enter­tain­ing photos.


As you can see this house was trashed. We took the ten­ant to Con­sumer, Trader & Ten­ancy Tribunal which he did not attend. Because our case was so well doc­u­mented and the dam­age was so severe we were awar­ded full costs, which has never been done before given the age of the carpet/paint work.


If you would like to avoid all these hassles and save money in the long run hav­ing your invest­ment prop­erty pro­fes­sion­ally man­aged give Juile Collins a call on 02 9869 2333.



Jhai is an award win­ning Inter­net Mar­ket­ing Real Estate Agent for Eld­ers Toongab­bie and Kings Langley. After run­ning his own inter­net mar­ket­ing busi­ness he has now set his own sites for the real estate industry. He observed that 90% of real estate agents did not know how to mar­ket them­selves online. Jhai is now fixed on one goal. To teach real estate agents that they can mar­ket online so much bet­ter than they cur­rently are.

Since then he has been con­sist­ently quoted in the Sydney Morn­ing Her­ald and Real Estate Busi­ness online. He is a reg­u­lar guest blog­ger on TheHomePage.com.au, shar­ing his expert­ise of mar­ket­ing aspects for the Real Estate Industry. His biggest pas­sions are his wife, mar­tial arts, dogs and most of all property.

seven hills real estate agent NSW
Cnr Federal Road Prospect Highway Seven Hills NSW 2147 Australia