Building a good relationship with your new real estate agent can be difficult when you are renting. Often they are busy and, as a tenant, you feel that they aren’t getting back to you on matters that you feel need addressing urgently.
A cracked pipe, a leaking toilet or malfunctioning air-conditioning in the peak of the Australian summer can all create intense anxiety and stress for those having to live with the situation.
Here are three make-or-break hints on building that (often tenuous) relationship with your real estate agent:
1. Be honest from the beginning
From the viewing of the property to the application stage, right through to the (fingers crossed) tenancy agreement with your agent, it is always important to maintain a good history of honesty. Providing honest professional and personal references (both workplace and previous landlords if you were renting a property before) can go a long way.
2. Ask questions
Nothing shows more that you are serious about renting a property than asking questions. What methods of payment do they accept for rent each month? Is water usage included or billed separately? Does your apartment block run on one water meter or is each billed independently? Make a list of questions before you view a property to take with you. Being certain of all of these questions can mean the difference between a strained relationship with your agent later on, and a positive and friendly one.
3. Be polite when asking questions and ALWAYS keep a paper trail
You will find quite quickly when renting a property, that if you are to pester your real estate agent with questions over the phone, they will often be out of the office on inspections or viewings, and your entire relationship will be based on voicemails. Put your questions into an email for them. This way you have digital proof of the conversations and agreements that have occurred and issues that have been raised – and it also means that time-poor agents, who very often respond to emails outside of office hours, will respond once they are back in front of their computer. Agents have many tenants to take care of, so it also helps to email so that they have time to look up your details and give your a concrete answer, without putting them on the spot over the phone.