Tag Archives | rent brisbane

Switch On to Safety…

switchSince March 1st 2008 there has been a requirement in Queensland legislation for all rental properties to have a safety switch installed to the power circuit. The Queensland Government has been reviewing laws with the possibility of extending the obligations to include not only the power circuit but also the lighting circuit. More information will be provided to our clients once it comes to hand.

Section 185 of theResidential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2009 (Qld) requires lessor’s to ensure that the rental property is safe and fit to live in. This provision is broadly interpreted to include the provision of safety switches being checked on a regular basis to ensure that they are in sound working order.

Our agency strongly recommends that our lessors have their safety switches checked at least once a year to ensure that they’re in sound working order. We recommend that the safety switch in your investment property is checked at least twice a year to ensure that they are in sound working order and effective.

If you’d like our agency to organise an electrical safety check on your investment property, please provide written instructions to our agency. Only an electrician can verify that a safety switch is installed and in sound working order.

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What Are the Most Important Things You Need to Know When Choosing a Rental?

rentalChoosing a home to rent can be a very personal decision and trying to decide if a rental property is suitable for you at an open for inspection can be difficult. Especially when you consider how little time you actually have to look at it and when a number of other people are viewing it at the same time.

To help you get the most out of the limited time you have to inspect a rental we’ve listed a few practical areas of a house to consider before signing a rental agreement and hopefully help you to avoid overlooking something as necessary as “will my fridge fit in the kitchen”, in the rush of an open house!



Have a look for deadlocks, window locks and other security features. The level of security can make a huge impact on your insurance. Check before going to the inspection with your insurance company for what security features would make a positive or negative impact on your insurance policy.


Where can I store…

Storage can be expensive to buy if you don’t have enough of it, and especially so when you move house later on to a place where you no longer need it. Think about where you’ll store your bicycle, or snowboard when not in use, and even your book collection. Is there enough internal and external storage for all your important items? Also have a think about if there is enough pantry space, where all your linen will go and if there somewhere you can put all your cleaning items, including the broom!



Some rental properties are likely to be rented just the way they are when you view them. If there is junk in a garden shed, or the garden needs weeding ask the agent if it will be taken care of before moving in.


The hot and cold of it

Check the types of heating and cooling available. See what rooms it is available in and if it works. If it doesn’t work, ask the agent if and when it will be fixed.



Step out or measure rooms with a tape measure to ensure that not only will your prized designer dining table or antique bed fit in the room, but that you’ll actually be able to get it through the door.


Sparky and techy features

The location of the television antennae, powerpoints, telephone and Foxtel outlets can make a difference to the way you layout your furniture and electronics, such as computers and TV’s. Make sure that you’re happy with the locations.


Will your white goods fit?

Check that there is space in the kitchen for your fridge, dishwasher and other appliances that you like to have out on the bench. See if your washing machine and dryer will fit in the laundry, or if they come with the property. If you like to drip dry your clothes and other items in the laundry, see if there is space to do so.


Green thumb or not?

Have a look around outside in the garden and check what kind of maintenance is required. Ask whether it is expected that you maintain the garden or if there is a gardener that comes around. If so, check what their duties are. If you happen to have a green thumb and want to set up a veggie garden, ask if it would okay to do so.


Are you a Gas or Electricity kind of person?

This really is a personal choice; some people prefer gas cooking while others might like electric hot water. Whichever is your preference, check what’s available and that you’re happy with it.


Other things to consider

  • Does the property have roller doors or shutters, check to if they are electric or if you manually have to open and close them.
  • If there is car parking with the property check how many spaces it contains. Have a look at the local parking signage, as you may require parking permits.
  • If in doubt about anything, ask the agent so as to avoid making assumptions which may lead to a headache latter on.


Happy house hunting!


Source : www.realestate.com.au (12 July 2012)


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Bottoming Out = the Best Time to Buy!

time to buyWe might well be experiencing the nadir of the real estate market which makes this an excellent time to buy. Through most of 2011 and the beginning of this year, the Australian economy has been hobbled by sentiment. Sentiment is important for key measurements such as growth and employment but is challenging to measure or put a dollar value on.

In my business, we get a good feel for sentiment because the people we deal with are usually making serious decisions and they talk about why they are making them. And the feeling over the past 18 months has been marked by uncertainty, caution and a reluctance to commit.

When you’re running a household or a business and you have to juggle rising costs of living with employment concerns, new taxes and constant reports of a European crisis, it’s understandable that people have lost their confidence.

The Westpac-Melbourne Institute Index of Consumer Sentiment has been running very low this year. The June Index showed Australians were 1.7% less confident last month than they were in October 2011, despite interest rate cuts since then totalling 125 basis points.

So it was with a glimmer of optimism that I saw two signs this week of perhaps a small turnaround in sentiment. Firstly, we saw positive house value data creeping back into the numbers. Home values rebounded one percent in June, according to RP Data-Rismark. Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane each rose 1%; Perth and Canberra boasted a 2% increase. Hobart reported the biggest rise for June at 2.7%.

It was a welcome mini-comeback for house values after the all-capital cities index fell -1.4% in May.

It suggests that the two interest rate cuts from the RBA in May and June have at least given some impetus to the genuine buyers who have been holding off.

The second sign I saw this week was from the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ building approvals for May 2012.  It showed a rebound in apartment building approvals, up 45% on approvals in May 2011. The downside was that approvals for houses had gone backwards by 7.7%.

So the fact that the RBA held the cash rate at 3.5% last week, along with the small bounce in some housing numbers, creates a sense that we might be at the bottom of this real estate market. With rates on hold after two cuts, and house values improving slightly, this could be a good time to buy.

It’s also a good time to refinance: since 1990 the official interest rate has only been lower than 3.5% between February and October 2009. So whatever is happening in China or Europe, this is a low-interest rate era of history. This is good for buyers and good for mortgage holders.

There is nothing wrong with waiting for the bottom of the market and low interest rates. But it isn’t caution I worry about – it’s inaction caused by fear. A comeback in sentiment will start when enough people see a depressed real estate market as a good time to buy, rather than evidence of doom.


Capital city house yield by the numbers

3.7% – The median rental yield in Melbourne in June, according to RP Data.

4.3% – The median rental yield in Adelaide, in June, according to RP Data.

4.4% – The median rental yield in Sydney in June, according to RP Data.

4.4% – The median rental yield in Perth in June, according to RP Data.

4.6% – The median rental yield in Brisbane in June, according to RP Data.

4.6% – The median rental yield in Canberra in June, according to RP Data.

5.1% – The median rental yield in Hobart in June, according to RP Data.

6.1% – The median rental yield in Darwin in June, according to RP Data.


Written By : Mark Bouris

Source : The Property Observer (4 July 2012)

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