For many residential tenants, and landlords, this is a potentially very stressful time. As a landlord myself, I have a mortgage on a property and am well aware that my tenants are good tenants and great people as individuals.
The first step I took when the Corona Virus issue came onto the scene was to approach my property manager and ask if the tenant had voiced any concerns. As at this time, nothing has been said.
However, I am well aware that many renters are facing an uncertain time and that a lot of unnecessary fear has been bread, as a result of the late announcement by the government about their relief package. However, while I am pleased about the latest package announced by the Morrison Government on March 30th, about payments up to $1500 per fortnight for employees who are on hiatus from their jobs, but still importantly employed.
This takes a huge amount of stress off the situation for many renters and landlords for that matter.
If You Are Experiencing HardShip
Naturally, if you are in any kind of financial difficulty, I urge you to speak to your rental manager, sooner rather than later. I know it can be embarrassing and uncomfortable, but having the conversation brings the issues into the open and allows both sides to negotiate a suitable compromise to help solve the situation.
I know that I will be much more lenient with my tenants when they come to me and we can solve the issue together, rather than just wait for the payment date to pass and then start to chase up the situation.
It also helps us to all be on the same page. As a landlord, when the tenant approaches me with a problem, I will look at a way to solve it so we are all able to get through together.
I have heard of some landlords preempting any contact and simply telling their tenant s that they expect the full rent, no ifs or buts.
I think that is very poor form myself and know that while there is always a possibility of abuse, most people will want to know they are safe in their homes and self-isolating.
In the case of landlords, there are also options, via your lending institution and modified payments for a time.
Together we can work through this.
Communication is Key
I know that some landlords rely on the income to live and others are paying off a mortgage, or both, and it is a challenge. However, with a will, there is a way through.
Please, if you are a renter, contact your landlord or agency as soon as possible. If you are a landlord, contact your property agency and initiate conversations both ways.
If the agency is behaving in a disgraceful and unprofessional manner, consider not renewing your contract with them after the lease is up.
I will be writing more on this very important topic over the coming days and will invite your comments regarding this issue.