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FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Old Mar 19th 2005, 4:49 am
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Default FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Hi all,

So, having got here, I thought I'd share what I've newly-learnt about renting a place in Australia:

Rental places are advertised on a daily basis. You pick up a list of properties from agents' offices. (So don't be surprised if you get asked to come back for information regarding rental properties; it just means they've not printed the list for that day off yet.) Rental prices are shown in $ per week, not per month.

Viewings are an en-mass affair: the agent arranges with the tenant an agreed date/time (often on a Saturday) and everyone interested in that property turns up at once and has a look around. Obviously designed to keep the disruption to the tenants to a minimum, but it means that the sense of competition amongst potential new tenants is fierce. Keen potential tenants may employ tactics designed to put others off (comments like, 'It's a bit small' or 'There's not a lot of natural light', to get you to see only the negative aspects of the place and stop you applying for it - thereby reducing their competition). Of course, such tactics have never been employed by the GG's, who are honest people and would never resort to such measures.

If you're interested in a place, you apply for it. If it's a nice place, so do three other people. It's then entirely up to the landlord as to who s/he decides they want to move in. The points below are useful in helping swing their decision, if you can provide the things at the time of application.

If you were renting a property in Britain, bring copies of references from the agent/landlord. If you rented more than one place, multiple referees are required, so bring 'em all! (If the UK agent tries to fob you off that they ordinarily only provide references to named others, rather than providing an open reference, explain the situation and try to convince them otherwise!) These will be checked, but it helps speed up the process.

If you are planning to get a house before getting a job, make sure that you have copies of recent bank statements available showing that you can cover the entire rental period. Ideally, this should be for an account that you're not using for day-to-day living expenses, as then they can see that the account won't be depleted just by living.

To get a house taken off the market and ensure that the agent doesn't show it to other people while your references are being checked out, you pay a holding fee of one week's rent. If your application is successful, it counts towards the rent during your tenancy; if it's unsuccessful, it's returned to you. Should you change your mind whilst the property is off the market, the agent returns the money to you minus one day's rent for each day the property was off the market.

Once your application for a place has been deemed suitable, you pay a bond (four week's rent), the rent and (if applicable) the agent's fee. I have yet to see an agent's fee of above $15.

At the moment, we're at the 'just lodged our application and had the property withdrawn from the market stage'. It's all looking good, as we met the owner of the property and, as he was British (you move 12,000 miles ...), he liked us. So, having got here on Saturday, we'd found a place to rent by Friday. A pretty storming week by all accounts. Of course, it helped that we'd pre-decided which area we wanted to live in before we left the UK (Glebe, Sydney) and had booked our first few days in a hostel in that area to acquaint ourselves with it and check we like it (which we do - I don't care what anyone says about the inner-West 'burbs, Glebe is ace! ); made the search area a lot smaller.

Of course, this is just our experience. Others might be able to share more, especially if this is just Sydney-specific info? Still, I thought it might give a few pointers.

Hope it's useful to someone and not just me rambling on to myself (as usual, I know ).

Nichola

Last edited by Geordie George; Mar 19th 2005 at 4:50 am. Reason: Spelling. If there are more mistakes, I don't care! I cannae be bothered to change 'em.
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Old Mar 19th 2005, 6:52 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Thanks Nichola - definitely useful for me for our move to Perth.
We're currently renting in the UK directly with the property owner and without a contract. (This has more +s than -s as we're renting for considerably less than the market rate and are not subject to a fixed six month deal ... and she's a nice lady .... so far!). I'll ask her for a reference before we leave - I assume that this should just say that we rented from xx to xx, paid on time and maintained the place well - is there anything I've missed?
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Old Mar 19th 2005, 7:00 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Very useful post! Sounds pretty much like what we just went through in Perth, with a couple of minor differences:

1. The agents' fees - I've always seen them charge one week's rent here (wish it was only $15!).

2. The "option fee" (the money you pay when you initially put in an application) - if you change your mind on the property after applying, you won't get a refund here I never heard the money was specifically for taking the property off the market, though it sounds likely.
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Old Mar 19th 2005, 7:17 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Originally Posted by Geordie George
Hi all,

So, having got here, I thought I'd share what I've newly-learnt about renting a place in Australia:

Rental places are advertised on a daily basis. You pick up a list of properties from agents' offices. (So don't be surprised if you get asked to come back for information regarding rental properties; it just means they've not printed the list for that day off yet.) Rental prices are shown in $ per week, not per month.

Viewings are an en-mass affair: the agent arranges with the tenant an agreed date/time (often on a Saturday) and everyone interested in that property turns up at once and has a look around. Obviously designed to keep the disruption to the tenants to a minimum, but it means that the sense of competition amongst potential new tenants is fierce. Keen potential tenants may employ tactics designed to put others off (comments like, 'It's a bit small' or 'There's not a lot of natural light', to get you to see only the negative aspects of the place and stop you applying for it - thereby reducing their competition). Of course, such tactics have never been employed by the GG's, who are honest people and would never resort to such measures.

If you're interested in a place, you apply for it. If it's a nice place, so do three other people. It's then entirely up to the landlord as to who s/he decides they want to move in. The points below are useful in helping swing their decision, if you can provide the things at the time of application.

If you were renting a property in Britain, bring copies of references from the agent/landlord. If you rented more than one place, multiple referees are required, so bring 'em all! (If the UK agent tries to fob you off that they ordinarily only provide references to named others, rather than providing an open reference, explain the situation and try to convince them otherwise!) These will be checked, but it helps speed up the process.

If you are planning to get a house before getting a job, make sure that you have copies of recent bank statements available showing that you can cover the entire rental period. Ideally, this should be for an account that you're not using for day-to-day living expenses, as then they can see that the account won't be depleted just by living.

To get a house taken off the market and ensure that the agent doesn't show it to other people while your references are being checked out, you pay a holding fee of one week's rent. If your application is successful, it counts towards the rent during your tenancy; if it's unsuccessful, it's returned to you. Should you change your mind whilst the property is off the market, the agent returns the money to you minus one day's rent for each day the property was off the market.

Once your application for a place has been deemed suitable, you pay a bond (four week's rent), the rent and (if applicable) the agent's fee. I have yet to see an agent's fee of above $15.

At the moment, we're at the 'just lodged our application and had the property withdrawn from the market stage'. It's all looking good, as we met the owner of the property and, as he was British (you move 12,000 miles ...), he liked us. So, having got here on Saturday, we'd found a place to rent by Friday. A pretty storming week by all accounts. Of course, it helped that we'd pre-decided which area we wanted to live in before we left the UK (Glebe, Sydney) and had booked our first few days in a hostel in that area to acquaint ourselves with it and check we like it (which we do - I don't care what anyone says about the inner-West 'burbs, Glebe is ace! ); made the search area a lot smaller.

Of course, this is just our experience. Others might be able to share more, especially if this is just Sydney-specific info? Still, I thought it might give a few pointers.

Hope it's useful to someone and not just me rambling on to myself (as usual, I know ).

Nichola
Thanks for taking the time to post this very useful info.
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Old Mar 19th 2005, 8:11 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Nichola,

A very useful post, thanks for letting us know the 'inside' story!!!

Good luck with your life in Oz.

Cheers

D D
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Old Mar 19th 2005, 8:37 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

[Excellent info.....thank you!
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Old Mar 20th 2005, 6:57 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Hi,

Yeah, I think our letters say pretty much what you've stated - tenancy period, rent amount and that the property was left as originally found.

Glad it's been useful info for people.

GG

Originally Posted by bal56
Thanks Nichola - definitely useful for me for our move to Perth.
We're currently renting in the UK directly with the property owner and without a contract. (This has more +s than -s as we're renting for considerably less than the market rate and are not subject to a fixed six month deal ... and she's a nice lady .... so far!). I'll ask her for a reference before we leave - I assume that this should just say that we rented from xx to xx, paid on time and maintained the place well - is there anything I've missed?
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Old Mar 20th 2005, 7:15 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

We are heading for the sunshine coast in about five months and once our house is sold in between this time (hoping) we intend to move into my parents house with them. I know it's technically not renting but do you think a letter from my dad saying we were good tenants would count as a kind of reference. I suppose they aren't to know that he's my dad cause name is different. Do you think this is feasible?

Thanks

Shelley
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Old Mar 20th 2005, 7:27 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Originally Posted by saraliz
Very useful post! Sounds pretty much like what we just went through in Perth
Hi Saraliz, just curious as to where you are in Freo?
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Old Mar 20th 2005, 8:20 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Originally Posted by Geordie George
.... and had booked our first few days in a hostel in that area to acquaint ourselves with it and check we like it (which we do - I don't care what anyone says about the inner-West 'burbs, Glebe is ace!
Nichola,

What exactly do people say about the inner western suburbs which is, presumably, adverse?
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Old Mar 21st 2005, 1:59 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Hi there,

Some of the Inner West suburbs receive less favourable comments than areas on the coast, in the south etc. At least, the ones I've read! Erm, mainly along the lines of them being hotter, more crowded, less desireable, more run down. That kinda thing.

Horses for courses though. I love Glebe, so ... whatever rings your bell.

GG

Originally Posted by Banksia
Nichola,

What exactly do people say about the inner western suburbs which is, presumably, adverse?
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Old Mar 21st 2005, 4:28 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Originally Posted by Geordie George
Hi there,

Some of the Inner West suburbs receive less favourable comments than areas on the coast, in the south etc. At least, the ones I've read! Erm, mainly along the lines of them being hotter, more crowded, less desireable, more run down. That kinda thing.

Horses for courses though. I love Glebe, so ... whatever rings your bell.

GG
Accidentally drove through Glebe yesterday. Not a bad area despite the petty crime. The main drawbacks of the inner west are summer heat, pollution and depending on the suburb crime. Newtown is a known heroin hotspot however branding the whole inner west on that is a bit unfair. The inner west is also lacking in greenery, especially when compared to the North Shore.

The good side is there is loads of good food due to all the post war migrants and there is reasonable public transport.

The appearance of lots of people looking at rentals should not fool you although vacancy rates are now finally dropping.
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Old Mar 21st 2005, 8:02 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Thanks for the advice.

SS
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Old Mar 21st 2005, 8:20 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Just to add a little more to GG's experience. (We are renting in Black Rock, Melbourne)

Maybe its just here but we found that the agents lists were printed weekly and we just missed a few properties. Generally we were advised to look at www.realestate.com every day for new properties and view on the day they appeared on the website.

We made our rental application before we had jobs and having owned property in the UK could not provide references. We brought mortgage statements that showed regular payments and the estate agents details that were used to sell our flat. We also gave the email addresses of 2 referees. This was enough for the agent and I don’t think that they actually took up the references in the end.

The only issue for us was that the landlord was looking for an ongoing rental and us only 6 months until we buy. To secure the unit we paid the bond and the 6 months rent upfront. It was a dent to the pocket but at least it will mean more money for the next few months once we start earning.

Lisa
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Old Mar 21st 2005, 8:28 am
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Default Re: FYI: Renting / Leased accommodation in Aus

Hi BP,

We heard from the agent today that we get the keys at 4pm on Thursday, so we'll all be in (me, Mr GG and the four suitcases - it's not a lot, but it's home ) by 4.05pm on Thursday!

What I like most about Glebe is it's laid-back, arty-farty kinda feel. There are lots of book shops and cafes and the choice in food (as you rightly say, lots of Lebanese, Indian, etc places) is excellent. The buses are frequent and plentiful but (at least where we are) is only a 20 minute walk to Darling Harbour, so you don't have to use them.

Anyway, you planning on heading out for the meet Soapy's trying to organise?

Nichola

Originally Posted by bondipom
Accidentally drove through Glebe yesterday. Not a bad area despite the petty crime. The main drawbacks of the inner west are summer heat, pollution and depending on the suburb crime. Newtown is a known heroin hotspot however branding the whole inner west on that is a bit unfair. The inner west is also lacking in greenery, especially when compared to the North Shore.

The good side is there is loads of good food due to all the post war migrants and there is reasonable public transport.

The appearance of lots of people looking at rentals should not fool you although vacancy rates are now finally dropping.
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