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REIQ Journal : December January 2009
PROPERTY MANAGEMENT 43 It is worthwhile investigating SMS software programs to see if they could help your business to communicate with your clients in a time-efficient and cost-effective manner. Many property managers make a phone call to the tenant but there is a growing trend in the use of short messaging service (SMS) technology.Many agents have found the introduction of this technology to be of great benefit to their businesses as it can also be used to communicate easily with some lessors, prospective tenants and contractors. It is worthwhile investigating SMS software programs to see if they could help your business to communicate with your clients in a time-efficient and cost-effective manner. Section 153 of the Residential Tenancies Act states that the lessor may issue a Notice to Remedy Breach (RTA Form11) if they have reasonable grounds to believe that a tenant has not paid their rent for a period of at least seven days. Best practice is to serve the tenant with a Form11 for unpaid rent on the eighth day. Some property managers hand deliver the notice to the letter box or entry point of a property, while most post the notice. Postage times need to be accounted for in the statutory seven day time frame. For more information about postage, refer to the Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) fact sheet entitled Allowing time when serving notices, which is available from www.rta.qld. gov.au Property managers should print three copies of the completed Form11 – one for the tenant, one for the file (and follow up) and one for the lessor. Section 36 of the Property Agents and Motor Dealers Real Estate Agency Practice Code of Conduct states that: “A real estate agent managing a rental property must immediately notify the client in writing if the agent becomes aware of a customer’s breach of the agreement or contract for the property, unless the agent’s appointment to act as agent directs otherwise.” Realworks formEF109 can be used as a best practice cover letter when you send a copy of the notice to the lessor. It is recommended that you phone the lessor before sending the letter, as they will usually call once they’ve received the notice. REIQ Journal December 2008/January 2009