More Australians are shifting their sights to Sydney real estate for rent, and this invites a lot of questions–from how rent is calculated in Sydney to unspoken landlord-tenant rules. One of the most pressing concerns of renters is property maintenance; there are even several myths about it floating around. Here are some of the most popular misconceptions about rental property maintenance in Sydney:
Myth #1: Renting Is a Waste of Money
Many people think that buying property is the only good investment in real estate; renting is just a waste of money. For the most part, the former is very true. For example, the cost to rent commercial real estate in Sydney can cost a renter up to a whopping $2,000 per square metre, which sounds like a good deal for tenants, but a nightmare for the one paying the lease.
However, there are many pros to renting, especially residential property, such as the flexibility to move, the convenience of shared responsibility in property management, and the financial savings. Buying a home requires a lot of commitment, both in time and finances, and not everyone has the opportunity and resources to do it. Renting is also the better choice for people who don’t want to (or can’t) settle down in one place for long.
Myth #2: Doing It Yourself Saves Money
Do-it-yourself (DIY) maintenance can save you a great deal of money on rental repairs, but that’s only if you know what you’re doing. Not all repair and maintenance work can be done DIY style–so, unless you’re a skilled tradesperson, it’s best to leave some things to the professionals. This is to ensure that the work can withstand wear and tear (which is essential in rental properties), meets health and safety regulations, and is within compliance. Otherwise, you may end up with greater financial loss having to rectify any mistakes or redo insufficient work.
Myth #3:Tenants Are Responsible for Repairs
It’s easy to assume that maintenance and repairs fall on tenants’ shoulders. After all, they’re the ones living on the property–but that’s not always the case. Typically, this responsibility is shared between the landlord and the tenants, the terms of which are agreed upon in writing when you sign your lease.
To know who shoulders which problem, it’s important to identify the nature of the issue, whether it’s from wear and tear or if it’s property damage. If it’s the former, it’s on the landlord; if it’s the latter, it’s on the tenant.
Myth #4: Landlords Can Conduct Inspections Whenever They Want
Routine property inspections are expected in rentals, but that doesn’t mean that your landlord can just barge in whenever they want to. As a tenant, you have rights that protect you from being subject to too-frequent property inspections and check-ups done without written notice.
You also can’t be evicted automatically over minor faults; routine inspections allow you to iron out any issues with your landlord and you should be provided time to rectify mistakes afterwards. That said, if you are in clear breach of the tenancy agreement or are suspected of doing something illegal, then you can be asked to leave the property without notice.
Myth #5: Landlords Can Increase Rent at Any Time
Landlords can’t change your rent at any time. There are several restrictions on when, how often, and how they can raise rent prices. In the case that they meet conditions that allow them to raise your rent, they must give you a written notice within a minimum notice period.
Myth #6: A Rental Bond Protects You From Eviction
A rental bond is there to cover your landlord, not you. It’s meant to be a security in case you don’t follow the tenancy agreement; it doesn’t guarantee your lease terms in any way. Usually, the bond is used for property maintenance or repairs, but it can be used in other ways as well.
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