Accommodation in Australia: scams you should look out for

Hi,

Committing to renting or buying accommodation when you’re new to or have not moved to Australia just yet is always a stressful endeavour. Would you like to help us in putting together a handbook of what to look out for when house hunting in Australia?

What are the most common scams in Australia?

What are the red flags to look out for when scanning through adverts?

Is there a list of registered or accredited landlords or real estate agencies in Australia?

What authorities should be sought should one come across an accommodation scam?

Please share your experience,

Bhavna

When looking up properties in Australia you want to steer towards these websites like all properties group, australiada, rentfind, realestateview.com.au if you reside in the Queensland area.

justlanded/nestoria, domain.com.au, finder.com.au, estate portal agents, property.com.au, rent.com.au onthehouse.com.au, allhomes.com.au, homely.com.au, and trovit.

These are the best sites to look up but as a rule of thumb know the property value of a townhouse, villla, one bedroom or three bedroom rental, the price of electricity, gas, and water included.

Gated communities will throw in water but your on your own for electricity and gas are only given to one, two, or three bedroom rentals that are not in a gated community.

Things to check for Damage caused by prior tenants, report to the building manager or the site manager before moving in.

Otherwise they will assume you made the damages yourself.

Check if there is any parking available there should be in a townhouse complex and if you get a rental home but not if its a rooming accommodation, do they allow pets, smoking or nonsmoking.

How much does the rent go for per week usually you want to find something in the $270 to $300 range per week which would result to $540 to $600 every two weeks in a month period for your rent.

If your in a relationship the costs are split between you two for the most part and if you run into any issues with your tenancy agreement like wanting to break your release, being vacated without proper notice or time to locate another property, lack of maintenance to fix leaky pipes, faulty wiring, and utility issues. 

Then refer to QSTARS in Spring Hill, QLD and the Residential Tenancies Authority to get the adequate help to pursue legal action. I repeat if your landlord is asking you to pay rent while the property is going to be sold and you haven't been properly notified. You may be entitled to getting that money back. Especially if you find out there is an infestation problem going on within your property. Like vermin, fire ants, or undesirables and vandals.

Best Regards,

Mr. Self Help Hero

Australia real estate industry is highly regulated not only by government but also by the industry bodies
Cases of fraud are minimal. Having said that, a few years back there were a few cases of some people selling houses that they didn’t own.
As a result the government set up an online authentication system to verify identity of sellers. Post office was appointed as the verifying agent- and this they do in a few days -sending the report directly to the conveyancers. Dealing with conveyancing lawyers while not a legal requirement helps in certifying various things of important to the sale and buying process.
Properties bought through auctions may have a few issues with price related fixing activities. Ie for example, understating the property selling prices by agents to attract more bidders. This while it is also under scrutiny can disorganise a buyer and result in them losing money especially if they had procured inadequate finance in preparation of this bidding
As for renting, most properties are listed on the overall website www. Realestate.com.au , and this listing is almost a seal that the property is in the market. Looks out too for properties from main agencies like Professionals, Raywhite, Harcourts, Barryplant, First  National.  I wouldn’t be very concerned about getting conned here. But, good practice to see the property yourself or sending a rep before signing the lease, mainly to ascertain published info on house condition and location. Importantly, check and rule out close proximity to overhead powerlines, noisy places like parks, train stations, clubs etc

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