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Property Maintenance Ponderings

I’m quite new to the rental game… it has been many years since I have been a tenant and I am a little bemused by the whole concept and process of rental property maintenance.

In order to get the most out of any property, some level of maintenance is required.  No matter how careful you are, or how new and fresh the property is, there will always be things that break, wear out, or just don’t work properly.

As a home owner for many years, I have always been very aware of stuff that needs doing around the house, and as am amateur handyman, have for the most part been able to fix or repair pretty much everything that needed doing.  However, as a “tenant” there are restrictions on the types of things I am allowed (or supposed) to do around the house… and I am still coming to terms with what these are.

Maintenance Requests

I have (I believe) an excellent relationship with the rental agent, and have found them eager to help out as much as possible… but because maintenance requests and problems often seem to have to be relayed back to the owner… for the most part find it a long, drawn out, and often frustrating process.

There are many problems that I could fix myself, but instead I have to notify the agent, and wait (often weeks or months) to have them resolved or see what the “decision” is about whether they should be done.  Here are some examples :

Case 1 – TV Reception

When we first moved in, it quickly became clear that the TV reception was not what it should be.  At first I thought we may have been in a bad reception area, but after speaking to the neighbours (who had no problems), decided there was a connection problem somewhere – so reported it to the agent.

Normally I would have been happy to have a poke around myself to try and see what the problem was, but thought it would be best left to the Agent to send someone around to check. After several weeks I was contacted by a contractor, who came out, and eventually determined it was simply a loose connection at the aerial… Problem solved (after several weeks and some expense to the agent) – we now have crystal clear TV Reception.

Case 2 – TV Connection

We have a plethora of TV connections scattered around the house… one in the lounge/dining area, and one in each of the bedrooms.  Unfortunately we don’t need the ones in the bedrooms, the one in the lounge is in the wrong spot, and there is no connection at all in the large downstairs rumpus room area.  At the moment we are unable to setup or watch TV downstairs and are running a cable across the middle of the floor to the only sensible/logical place to put a TV inn the lunge room.  This has caused some drama with several people tripping on it, but at them  moment is our only real option.

I have put in a request to the rental agent (several weeks ago), because I am not sure whether this is the owners responsibility to have resolved or part of mine as the tenant.  They plan to “get a quote” but I am still waiting for this to happen.   When the TV guy came to fix the reception (see above) I mentioned it to him and he suggested it would cost a couple of hundred dollars.  I reckon I could do it myself with an hour or twos effort and less than $50 in parts, but at the moment I am forced to play the waiting game to see if/when it can be resolved via the “proper channels”.