Finance advice
Fiona Blayney

Is your repair bill accurate?

By Fiona Blayney

How can you be sure that the tradespeople your property manager is recommending are the best and most cost-effective out there? 

Blogger: Fiona Blayney, managing director, Blayney Potential Plus 

When the hot water system bursts in the middle of the night, you want to feel secure that your property manager has developed a relationship with quality, honest, reliable and cost-effective tradespeople. But how do you know this is the case?

One of the most important tools a property management company has is their team of trusty tradespeople. After all, this group of people is an extension of the property manager’s service to you, and the cost of repairs and maintenance to your property have an effect on the annual financial return on your investment.

SELECTION OF TRADES
A reputable agency realises the importance of the tradesperson relationship and has a program in place to ensure both the standard of work is maintained and the fees are fair and reasonable.

It is of utmost importance that all works to your property are completed by a licensed and insured tradesperson. Your property manager will ensure they hold a copy of the tradesperson’s licence, together with a current copy of the business’ insurance and worker’s compensation certificates.

Utilising an unqualified and uninsured tradesperson may be cheaper in the short term, but it will more than likely result in poor workmanship.

Utilising the same tradespeople regularly allows the property manager to form relationships and negotiate a standard set of fees. These fees may include a reduced rate for their clients on the basis of the volume of work they receive, as well as timely payment.

Together with the legal documentation the agency may hold a copy of the standard fees, which can include call-out fee estimates for small jobs and quoting charges.

YOUR COST EXPECTATIONS
It is not unusual for a tradesperson to charge for quotes for small jobs. In some cases, it can take almost the same amount of time to do the quote as it would have taken to do the job, so most trades will only offer a free quote on larger jobs.

Whenever you are concerned about the cost of works exceeding your expectations, consider obtaining a rough estimate up front and agreeing on a fee per hour with a maximum limit.

When the tradesperson is on site, should the price go over and above this, request a quote.

FINAL CONSIDERATIONS
There will always be someone cheaper, who is willing to work for less per hour. You can source and use cheaper materials, or use less experienced, cheaper labour.

State to state, suburb to suburb, supply and demand of trade services change and as such, the fee structure differs.

In my experience, your agent has selected the tradespeople for a combination of factors – reasonable pricing, reliability, efficiency, speed of service, professionalism, quality of work, and the required licences and insurance.

The standard of your tradespeople is a reflection of your care for the property; it sends a direct message of your expectations of the tenant. If you don’t trust the information your property manager is giving you, you have bigger problems and it may be time to find someone you do trust.

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About the Blogger

Fiona Blayney

Fiona Blayney

Fiona Blayney is the managing director of the highly successful consultancy, coaching and training business Blayney Potential Plus, specialising in estate agency services in Australia, New Zealand, the UK and the US. Over the past eight years she has developed a reputation for being one of the best business strategy and growth specialists around.

Fiona’s energetic and motivational presence has ensured her popularity at industry events. She regularly performs keynote presentations for many of the leading industry groups both in Australia and abroad, including the National Association of Realtors (NAR) in the US and the National Association of Estate Agents, England and Scotland.

FROM THE WEB

podcast

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With the softening market impacting property values in many parts of Australia, Sally Dale, Opteon state director for NSW, ACT and Qld joins us to discuss the importance of valuations in the current property market

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Joining host Phil Tarrant, Sally will draw on her 25 years of experience in valuation and discuss the processes involved in arriving at a value for a particular property. She will also share how that process differs between commercial and residential properties and the difficulties which regional property valuations can present.

Sally will unpack the importance and cost of regular valuations on your properties, discuss whether presentation and owner input can sway a valuation and share what you should look for when seeking a reputable property valuer.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

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A softening market can be a difficult time for a property investor with finance approval tightening and property capital growth slowing, and while many real estate agents are also feeling the squeeze McGrath Brighton Le Sands' Bill Tsounias claims it is simply the market returning to normal.

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Bill joins host Phil Tarrant to share his thoughts on the current Sydney property market, and to share the shifts that he has seen in house and unit sale prices following their worst quarter in the past decade.

Bill will unpack why properties are spending longer on market, share what he believes property investors are doing wrong when trying to sell their properties and share the secrets to getting the best out of a real estate agent and an auction in the current softening market.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

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Top 100 ranked agent Bill Tsounias shares the secrets to getting the best deal in a softening market
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Gavin Kemp and his now-fiancé bought their first property together after only six months of dating. They weren’t even living together at the time. Now, two years on, the pair have bought five properties, sold two and have a solid plan in place for their ongoing property journey. 

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Gavin joins host Phil Tarrant to discuss how he chose the locations where he decided to invest and how, due to the initial lack of education (something that he now values highly), he lost money on his first two investments.

Gavin will share his thoughts on the current property market, reveal the people who he has leaned on throughout his property journey and discuss why his strategy employs a zero procrastination rule.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

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Launceston
Raceview

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A joint property portfolio before they were even living together

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