Landlords and property owners | COVID-19 advice

We are providing this update at a time when new announcements seem to be affecting our industry by the day. To that extent, this advice is general in nature and we encourage you to talk with your property manager as to your personal circumstances and how we can assist you.

Like you, we are doing the best we can to filter the information and apply that in a practical sense to tenant and landlord relationships. We will be available to assist you for as long as these circumstances are with us.  Below are some responses to the common concerns being raised.

Tenant’s obligations to conform with lease obligations remain in place. This extends to maintenance and care of the property as well as financial payments. Tenants may apply and seek landlord assistance in deferring or negotiating rent and payment periods due to hardship. In the instance of our company, we will not agree to any variation to tenancy terms without your consent. It is important to note that the eviction of tenants for non-payment of rent is currently void under the transition arrangements announced by Government. Should a tenant request rent relief we will be seeking to qualify that request such as loss of employment or in a commercial sense forced closure or loss of revenue. Your property manager will guide you through possible responses that you may consider in assisting a tenant.

Landlords and property owners may benefit from assistance packages and you should keep abreast of these which include potentially land tax relief, bank interest deferment, and power charges relief. Importantly for commercial clients, any benefit that can be shared with a tenant is to be, for example, the deferment of payment of land tax expense. For many of our clients, we may remit on your behalf significant payments from rental cash flow such as a mortgage, council rates, and insurance premiums. If this is the case we encourage you to review the anticipated cash flow over the coming months and discuss with your property manager any variations you may require or how we can assist manage that cash flow.

Physical property inspections are clearly impacted significantly by current distancing laws. This will impact how we can conduct viewings for leasing and sales activity and also perform routine maintenance periodic inspections that are being deferred. In the instance of property vacates and bond processing these will be performed. For our commercial clients, the effects of changes on routine maintenance obligations are to be resolved however we will continue to assist our service contractors to where practical meet the maintenance of essential services obligations such as fire protection and lifts.

Finally, we understand that for many this is a time of stress and uncertainty. For our part, we want to help where we can which is to provide the best standard of service and advice. Property is a major avenue of financial security and at this time it may be appropriate to review your property performance or value. If you would like an update of the value of your investments or indeed your residence we would be happy to provide that for you.

As is the case with many businesses we are now performing some of our tasks remotely but for now, our office remains active although we are closed to the general public. Of course, should you have any questions please contact us.