Is Your agent holding enough Bond?


LANDLORDS are being left out of pocket by relying on tenancy bonds to cover missed rent payments or damage caused by rogue tenants.


The amount of bond tenants pay varies from state to state, but is generally four weeks rent. Exceptions usually kick in if the rent is over $400-$500 a week, in which case there is often no maximum bond payable.


In order to get bonds back at the end of a tenancy both a tenant and landlord have to sign a bond release form. If there is a dispute, then either party has to take it higher – usually to the relevant state’s consumer affairs body.


Carolyn Majda, general manager of Terri Scheer Insurance Brokers, said research showed that in 59 per cent of insurance claims made to landlords who were in the red because of tenants, bonds were not enough to cover their shortfalls.


Some instances of damage caused by rogue tenants Ms Majda has previously talked about include tenants turning properties into drug dens, bricking up internal doorways, planting a vegetable patch in a lounge room and even installing a chicken coop in a kitchen.


Common themes in tenancy disputes heard in New South Wales so far this year is unpaid rent, the cost of cleaning a house after a tenant leaves or removing rubbish.


Ms Majda said even responsible tenants can be costly.

“Even the most fastidious tenant can cause damage to a property or suffer undue hardship due to loss of job or other circumstances that leave them unable to pay the rent,” she said.

Source of news: http://www.news.com.au -June 27 2008

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