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What does your managing agent charge for appearing at tribunal?

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by BigKahuna, 30th Jan, 2016.

  1. BigKahuna

    BigKahuna Well-Known Member

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    I'm interested to hear what arrangements owners have with their managing agents when it comes to attending tribunal hearings regarding a tenant. Does your managing agent charge nothing except for disbursements? Or does she/he charge silly amounts per hour in preparing to go to tribunal? My current pm charges nothing; it's part of the service. A former pm charged $65 per hour for preparing to go to tribunal, and their final invoice was $1000+.
     
  2. JacM

    JacM VIC Buyer's Agent Business Member

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    Some PMs charge nothing other than disbursements and some charge an hourly fee. Be wary of those that charge an hourly fee. I think that those that earn nothing have a vested interest in managing tenancies well in the first place so they don't end up at tribunal.
     
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  3. D.T.

    D.T. Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    Just the tribunal's application fee, nothing to myself.
    There's time involved in preparing and presenting, so motivated to prevent it occurring by doing a good job in the first place. In saying that, it doesn't mean there isn't a willingness to go seek justice where necessary.
     
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  4. BigKahuna

    BigKahuna Well-Known Member

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    I also think that those who do not charge are incentivised to be more efficient.

    PMs who charge can get lazy, having in the back of their mind that if the proverbial hits the fan and they have to go to the tribunal, they can charge an arm and leg 'getting organised'. They then have the luxury of spending hours, and hours, and hours (and the landlord has no comeback) pulling together things they could have done along the way during the tenancy.

    Being charged about 20 hours preparing to go to tribunal when they had most of the information is ridiculous. end rant.
     
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  5. Xenia

    Xenia Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    Wow BK was that $1000 plus recouped from tenant and reimbursed back to you?
    That's a lot of money to charge a client for something that should just form part of the service.

    Also 20 hours? Really?

    Realistically tribunal preparations do not take that long to prepare and most of mine now are less than 15 minutes of hearing time. If you avoid the drama and explanations and justifications and just state the outcome it's much quicker.
     
  6. BigKahuna

    BigKahuna Well-Known Member

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    Hi Xenia,
    Can it be recouped from the tenant? Yes, 20 hours is beyond ridiculous. I know that the managing agent had to get statements from workmen and she did a detailed timeline, but it still doesn't take 20 hours.
     
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  7. Xenia

    Xenia Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    Yes there are ways that tenants can be charged for hearing costs.

    Agree 20 hours is way too much and it's the cost of doing business in a real estate agency anyway.

    Property managers need to remember that they are dealing with long term relationships. People sign a management contract and the average lifespan of a pm client is 4 years (I've had clients with me for over 10 years)

    Therefore counting and charging for every minute spent on a client goes against the business model of long term clients.

    We offer one off services for self managing clients, ie step in and represent a client at a hearing when things have gone wrong, one off routine inspections... There are charges for those services because they are one off, but for a long term client on full service contracts, those things form part of the service so it does not make sense to count every hour spent. That's what the management fees are for.
     
    Last edited: 31st Jan, 2016
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