With tradie shortages, COVID restrictions and tight budgets, some landlords are attempting repairs and maintenance themselves. Others are engaging tradespeople based on the cheapest possible quote.

Be very careful.

When it comes to residential rental properties, there are strict regulations on who can conduct repairs and maintenance. If things go wrong, it can cost the landlord far more than they save.

6 Things you need to know before you DIY on your rental property

  1. Established property managers have a network of excellent tradies who will prioritise work on the properties in their care. It’s certainly the case for our landlords. In fact, we have the power to be highly selective about the tradespeople we use and we select according to their reliability, quality workmanship and value for money.
  2. Trades must carry significant insurance – particularly if they are working on a strata property. If you choose to use your own trades, make sure you ask to see their certificate of insurance and expect to see an 8 or 9 figure sum insured.
  3. Tradies who work on rental properties must have a registered Australian Business Number (known as an ABN). There are huge penalties if something goes wrong and the authorities discover you used an unregistered tradesperson.
  4. Only qualified trades can perform repairs on rental properties so if you are planning to do the work yourself, you need to be a qualified, insured and registered tradesperson. Ignoring this legal requirement could cost you far more than the repairs themselves!
  5. Never contact the tenant direct – even if it is to arrange a time to conduct repairs or maintenance – as it could lead to disputes or complaints between you and the tenant.
  6. Always talk to your property manager before embarking on any repairs, maintenance or upgrades on your investment property. At Stills Properties, we believe an important part of our job is to advise landlords on what work needs to be done so you don’t over invest in your property.

One more peril

Ignorance is probably the biggest risk for any landlord. Whether it’s how to choose a conscientious property manager or what is and isn’t allowed. But that’s why so many of our landlords choose Stills Properties and then recommend us to their friends and family.

We build relationships with both our landlords and our tenants so they feel comfortable asking us questions or discussing their concerns. They know they will receive timely, honest and knowledgeable advice.

If you are thinking about buying your first investment property or you are an established landlord who is tired of being treated like a number, get in touch with Brigitte from Stills Properties. Simply call 1300 091 638 or email propertymanager@stillsproperties.com.au

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