Fees worth paying?

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by geeza, 28th Jan, 2020.

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  1. geeza

    geeza Well-Known Member

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    Hi all, might be different requirements from state to state. I’m in NSW.

    If rented out 4 properties to date (3 which are older homes to 1 agent & 1 which was a new build to another agent). Ignore the new build as it had warranty in place.

    Included in all the fees payable initially-letting fee, advertising fee etc. I have been charged smoke alarm and water efficiency test each time.

    Reasoning provided by agent:
    Smoke alarm: ‘of house catches fire and damages tenant items....or worse if tenant is seriously injured...assists you with insurance etc. This I don’t really mind paying $99 fee for a certificate and signed off.

    Water efficiency test: basically a plumber comes in and turns on the hot water and then cold water taps (bathroom, laundry and kitchen). Not sure if a certificate is provided by apparently communicates with agent that water supply ‘is sufficient’. Costs $149 from memory and takes around 45 seconds to complete (could be wrong but I was there once and that’s whats I saw). Is this necessary? Is this something people have payed for?

    Just after generally advice based on previous experience please.
     
  2. Dan Wood

    Dan Wood Well-Known Member

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    What's the question? It's hard to decipher your post...
     
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  3. geeza

    geeza Well-Known Member

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    Anybody been charged these fees before? Is it necessary?
     
  4. kierank

    kierank Well-Known Member

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    I am still confused :eek:.

    Which fee(s) are you questioning - all of them? some of them? one of them? ...

    Please just list the one(s) that you are questioning/you feel are NOT justified.
     
  5. geeza

    geeza Well-Known Member

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    Ok there were a few spelling mistakes in there. Surely it’s not that hard to understand.

    Let’s try again:
    -water effiency test: has somebody been charged that? Is it necessary that it is completed? Single house, no second dwelling on property. (SEE ORIGINAL POST FOR DESCRIPTION).
     
  6. Michael Mitchell

    Michael Mitchell Property Manager Business Member

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    Compliance is a cost of doing business you need to factor in.

    In Qld for example, smoke alarm compliance is required annually and also at the start of every tenancy. To pass the water consumption charge onto tenants, the property must be water efficient and water compliant and the easiest way to demonstrate this is with a water compliance certificate issued by a licenced plumber.

    You can outsource your smoke alarm obligations including having a maintenance plan handing off it for as little as $79 per year. You can get a water compliance certificate for as little as $99 + materials and labour if require to make compliant. That's peanuts to have professionals do it and hang their name/insurance off it, why would you do it yourself and secondly exposes yourself to that liability when you can outsource it for so cheap?

    Letting fee - cost of doing business.
    Advertising fee - cost of doing business.
    Property management fee - cost of doing business.
    Insurance policies - cost of doing business.
    Accounting fees - cost of doing business.

    etc.
     
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  7. geeza

    geeza Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Michael,

    The compliance part about the water effiency now makes sense. Also just found a great article online which summaries.

    Cheers
     
  8. ChrisDim

    ChrisDim Well-Known Member

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    Actually, the plumber tests if your taps and shower heads comply with water efficiency measures (9L per minute in full flow). This is one of the requirements to claim water usage. If your taps and showerheads don’t comply, they will change them to a better star rating. From 23/03/20 it is getting even stricter so any time say there is a leaking tap, everything needs to be checked again! It’s coming to the point that it may not be worth claiming for water usage in future.
     
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  9. kierank

    kierank Well-Known Member

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    That wasn’t the problem.
    Well, it was because in your first post you stated:
    So which fee we you objecting to was my question as you listed a number.

    Then, in a later post, you state:
    Ah, so now you are questioning the water efficiency test.

    Now we know.

    It is what @Michael Mitchell wrote. BTW, he wrote a few words on a whole stack of fees. So, I gather he was just as confused as I was.

    Also, a tip for you:- if you want people to help you, DON’T WRITE SENTENCES IN CAPITALS as people take that as shouting and a lot of PC members will ignore you. I assume you know that, so that makes it even worse.
     
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  10. geeza

    geeza Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Chris, I just read that on a site. Not looking forward to the stricter rules. I know it’s important to save water but surely that’s overkill if it needs to be checked everytime there’s a leak. Could be a simple washer needs replacing and it will require another effiency test. Ahh fun times ahead! *sigh
    Appreciate your input, cheers!
     
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  11. willair

    willair Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Welcome to the real world of property investing,Smoke Alarms what do you think will happen if they are not serviced once a year and the property burns to the ground?.with the tenants family inside.Insurance company would use that as no can do and your left to face a manslaughter charge ..
    45 seconds for the plumbing test are you serious..
    45 seconds for the water testing ,do you intend to pay the water bills yourself if the system is not tested
     
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  12. geeza

    geeza Well-Known Member

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    Agreed about the smoke alarm. I’ve heard eventually in NSW they’ll need to be hard wired. Currently the battery operated ones have a ‘test’ button which is pushed to ensure they are in current working order.

    In terms of the water efficiency test, I wasn’t sure what the exact point of it was. This has been cleared up above.

    Thanks for your post!
     
  13. Marg4000

    Marg4000 Well-Known Member

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    In some states you need to prove your property is water efficient before you can pass on water charges to the tenant.
    You can then charge your tenant for water usage.
    This continues for years.
    Over the years you recover hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
    This is far more than the initial fee you paid.
    And your description of the test, “turning on a few taps” only and taking 45 seconds is not quite correct.
     
  14. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    At the bearest minimum, a one minute flow test will take........60 seconds (otherwise it's an estimate for the minute), a few seconds either way is not a big issue. This test is performed at each outlet not at only one tap and doesn't matter if it is hot or cold sad the restrictor is in the tap fitting not the handle.

    The plumber has to issue a certificate, a phone call to the agent is not worth the paper that it's written on.

    The test is to be performed on each tap outlet (kitchen, bathroom, shower) and toilets.

    We are a very sensitive lot.
     
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  15. willair

    willair Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    What's a sentence ?.
     
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  16. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    3 years and maybe less with good spelling. :rolleyes:
     
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  17. D.T.

    D.T. Specialist Property Manager Business Member

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    Smoke alarm maintenance: if your state requires it, then yes it’s worth it to remain compliant. In states where it’s not required, why would you?

    Water compliance: in states where it’s required in order to be able to pass on water bills, it’s worth it so you can pass on water bills. In states where it’s not required, why would you?
     
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  18. kierank

    kierank Well-Known Member

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    Nah, I would say decent and respectful :D.

    Some PC keyboard warriors don’t have any/many redeeming attributes and one could mount an argument that they be ignored/banned :eek:.