December 30, 2012

Staff safety and security - abuse, intimidation or threats

Does your agency have a written policy in place of what to do if verbally abused, intimidated or threatened by a client, customer or someone in the public during the course of their professional duties? Staff should be advised of what course of action to take if there is a threat made against them such as advise the licensee immediately who will determine the next course of action. This may include involving the police or discussing with the landlord to have the tenancy terminated due to objectionable behavior or other available grounds under relevant legislation.
If your agency allows the taking of  cash, ensure that staff are advised what to do in the event that there is a robbery; such as meet the robbers demands, comply with their requirements and give all money to them upon request. Also try to take note of particular attributes of the person/s such as estimated height, any distinguishing features or accents etc.

Due to safety risks and sometimes higher Professional Indemnity premiums, Licensees are encouraged to reconsider the taking of cash in the office and consider the many other options available.

December 29, 2012

NSW Real Estate Excellence best practice forms

NSW Real Estate Excellence Membership best practice forms as current - for more information about Membership please visit
Property Management

General Best Practice Forms


·        Cleaning guide for vacating tenants

·        Cover letter to landlord – copy of tenancy agreement and condition report

·        Keys – request to tenants for keys to be cut

·        Landlord disclosure statement – to be completed at time of listing

·        Landlord wishing to undertake own maintenance

·        Landlord wishing to use own contractors

·        Letter to landlord – curtains, blinds safety

·        Listing presentation booklet for landlords

·        Maintenance – landlord failure to attend to maintenance

·        Maintenance risk letter to tenant

·        Notice of rent increase

·        Notice to terminate tenancy agreement

·        Open homes booking form

·        PM weekly report template

·        Property inspection information for tenants

·        Public liability details request from landlord

·        Rental reference to other agency

·        Routine inspection cover letter to landlord

·        Routine inspection report template

·        Tenant enquiry form

·        Tenant maintenance and request form

·        Tips for inspecting decks and balconies

·        Vacate cover letter to tenant

·        Water invoice letter to tenant

·        Welcome letter to tenant – agency taking over management

More forms are coming and also best practice forms can be designed upon written request from members.
(Folder) Licensee information

·        Employment Letters and information

Annual Leave Application Form
Letter of engagement full time – part time
Letter of Final warning
Letter of successful probation
Letter of termination – serious misconduct
Letter of unsuccessful probation
Parental Leave Employee Checklist
Parental Leave notification form
Employer obligations – employee records and pay slips
Annual Leave and the National Employment Standards (NES)
Employment Records
Employment Records for Leave
Letter of first or second warning
Letter of termination
Letter of termination with notice
Template for record meetings
Parental Leave Employer Checklist
Roster Template
Weekly time and wages record
Fair Work Information Statement & the National Employment Standards
Maximum Weekly Hours and the National Employment Standards

 Real Estate Excellence does not provide specific advice about Real Estate Awards and the Fair Work Act.

General Information for Licensees

·        Business of your dreams plan

·        Changes to the Privacy Act – what you need to know

·        Do Not Call Register – calling times

·        Do Not Call Register – consent meaning

·        Do Not Call Register – Real Estate Industry information

·        Do Not Call Register – what is telemarketing

·        Drug Lab Awareness Brochure

·        Drug Labs – know the risks

·        Employee or Contractor – an article

·        Facebook content is advertising

·        File Smart – Electronic record keeping

·        Four ways to improve sales

·        Growing the rent roll thoughts

·        Incident reporting – for staff use

·        Licensees – that was then this is now

·        Mail register template

·        Managing the risk of falls at workplaces

·        Metricon QLD ordered to pay $800000 – misleading representation

·        Motiving staff

·        National real estate licensing

·        Overview of the Real Estate Award

·        Personal and Professional performance

·        Privacy Breaches Guide

·        Professional Indemnity insurance article

·        Professional Indemnity insurance for NSW

·        Real Estate Industry Award 2010

·        Real Estate fraud prevention guidelines

·        Rules of conduct – supervision and licensee in charge

·        Sips and trips fact sheet for agency risk management

·        Social media as a recruitment tool – are there legal implications

·        Social media policy template

·        Stronger Anti-Discrimination laws take effect

·        SWOT Analysis template

·        Team Building Activities

·        Ten steps to comply with the Privacy Laws

·        The 10 roadblocks for business owners

·        The word wide web of laws entangling social media

·        Workplace laws – what to do now

More information will be added online for member benefit

Property Management Procedures and Training Manual

Following is the content outline of PME - Property Management Excellence Training and Policies Manual - 250 pages in hard copy and online. PME also includes a tenancy sign up CD, QCAT Training CD and over 150 best practice forms. For more information visit
Contents of PME

Chapter 1                           PROPERTY MANAGEMENT – AN OVERVIEW

1.1             What is the role of a property manager?

1.2             Rent collection commission

1.3             Letting commission

1.4             Fees

1.5             Terminology

Chapter 2                           ENQUIRIES, DATABASE AND PROSPECTING

2.1         Example scripts

2.1.1      Tenant enquiry

2.2         Recommended tasks to grow the rent roll

2.3         Database set up

2.4         Newsletters and content

2.5         Daily, weekly, monthly plans

2.6         Other growth tips

 Chapter 3                           NEW BUSINESS AND PROPERTY MATTERS

3.1         The Management Agreement

3.1.1      Exclusive management agreements

3.1.2      Termination of management agreements

3.1.3      Let only and multi listing appointments

3.2         Explanatory notes for best practice completion of the PAMD Form 20a

3.3         Other matters when listing property for rent

3.3.1      Rental appraisals

3.3.2      Rental listing sheet

3.3.3      Landlord disclosure statement

3.3.4      Title search

3.3.5      Lessor obligations generally

3.3.6      Disclosure of death and other matters to prospective tenants

3.3.7      Lessor insurance details

3.3.8      Pest control

3.3.9      Light bulbs, gutters, gardens, house washing, trimming of trees

3.3.10    Mould

3.3.11    Body corporate by laws

3.3.12    Legal impediment

3.3.13    Pools

3.3.14    Safety switches

3.3.15    Smoke alarms

3.3.16    Keys and locks

3.3.17    Telephone lines

3.3.18    Television aerials/antennas

3.3.19    Solar Panels

3.3.20    Supply of goods and services

3.4         Taking over management from another agent or lessor

3.5         Preparing a property for rental

Chapter 4                           ADVERTISING AND SHOWING PROPERTY FOR RENT

4.1         Writing advertising copy

4.2         Rent must be advertised at fixed rental amount

4.3         Showing property

4.4         Showing property with a tenancy still in place

4.5         Vacant property reports

Chapter 5                           APPLICATION FORMS AND PROCESSING

5.1         Key factors in assessing applications

5.1.1      Guarantors

5.2         A person under the age of 18

5.3         Discrimination law

5.4         Presenting application forms to the lessor

5.5         Pets and smoking

5.6         Business applications

5.7         Approving tenants

5.8         Binding the tenant lawfully and acting in the lessor’s best interest

5.9         Face to face appointments for tenancy sign up

5.10       Script for tenancy sign up

5.11       Tenants who cannot come into office for sign up appointment

5.12       Sign up script to send via email

5.13       Declined tenancy applications


6.1         Required forms for tenancy sign ups

6.2         Fixed term and periodic tenancy

6.3         Standard terms and special terms of the agreement

6.4         Entry condition report

6.5         Providing the lessor with a copy of the entry condition report

6.6         Best practice procedures and the entry condition report

6.7         Bond lodgement requirements

6.7.1      RTA Form 2 – Bond lodgement form

6.7.2      RTA Form 2 – Part payment of bond form

6.8         The importance of the tenant acknowledgement form

Chapter 7                           RENT PAYMENT METHODS

7.1         Approved rent payment methods and advising tenants of costs

7.2         Payment of rent by electronic transaction

7.3         Dishonour fees and tenants

7.4         Rent in advance

 Chapter 8                           RENT ARREARS

8.1         Rent arrears procedures

8.2         Advising the lessor of the breach

8.3         If a notice to leave for unremedied breach has been issued

8.3.1      Time frame for lodging Tribunal papers after a notice to leave expires

8.4         Guide for tenants and property managers for rent arrears

8.5         Repeated breaches

8.6         Rent in advance

8.7         Rent accrues daily

 Chapter 9                           ROUTINE/GENERAL INSPECTIONS

9.1         Inspections, best practice and the law

9.2         Taking of photos

9.3         Reporting to the lessor

9.4         Follow up and quiet enjoyment

9.5         Grounds (reasons) for entry under the Act

9.6         Significant breaches during the tenancy

9.7         If the tenant refuses entry

9.8         General tips for carrying out a routine/general inspection

9.8.1      Tenant not keeping the property clean

9.8.2      Tenant caused damage to the property

9.8.3      High risk situations

9.8.4      Tips on how to complete routine inspections

Chapter 10                         TENANT OBLIGATIONS IN GENERAL

10.1       Tenant obligations and the Act

10.2       Tenants use of the premises

10.3       Tenant attaching fixtures or making structural changes

10.4       Tenant obligations to notify damage and maintenance

10.5       Tenants running a business from a rental property

10.6       Tenants using the premises for an illegal purpose

 Chapter 11                         RENTAL PROPERTY FOR SALE

11.1       Disclosure to tenants prior to commencing tenancy

11.1.2    Handing out of keys to salespeople

11.2       If a rental property goes on the market for sale in the first 2 months of a tenancy

11.3       If a tenant refuses entry to show buyers through

11.4       Legislative requirements generally

11.4.1    Taking photos

11.4.2    Open homes and onsite auctions

11.5       Notice periods for vacant possession for a contract of sale

11.6       Transfer of the tenancy by the lessor

Chapter 12                         GENERAL BREACHES OF THE TENANCY AND TENANTS

12.1       The approved form

12.2       Breach notice period

12.3       Examples of common breaches

12.4       Reasons breaches can be given to tenants

12.5       Repeated breaches

Chapter 13                         MAINTENANCE

13.1       Maintenance – an overview

13.2       Emergency maintenance

13.3       Routine maintenance

13.4       Lessor obligations and maintenance

13.5       Tenants’ rights regarding maintenance

13.6       Maintenance policy for agencies

13.7       Maintenance policy of the agency for lessors

13.8       Maintenance policy of the agency for tenants

13.9       Appointing contractors and tradespeople

13.10     Maintenance work orders

13.11     Lessor wishing to carry out their own maintenance

13.12     Lessor wishing to use their own contractors for maintenance

13.13     Lessor failing to carry out maintenance – a possible risk

13.14     Preventative maintenance

13.15     Tenant refusing entry to carry out maintenance

13.16     Email/Letter scripts to communicate maintenance to lessor and tenant

Chapter 14                         BREAK LEASE PROCEDURE

14.1       What is a break lease?

14.2       Excessive hardship and the tenant

14.2.1    Excessive hardship and the lessor

14.3       Break lease procedure

14.4       The legislation generally

Chapter 15                        CHANGE OF SHARED TENANCIES

15.1       What is a change of shared tenancy?

15.2       One or more tenants moving out of the property (one or more tenants remaining)

15.3       One or more new tenants moving into the property (with existing tenant remaining)

15.4       Charging tenants for change of shared tenancy arrangements

Chapter 16                         WATER AND TENANCIES

16.1       When can water charges be passed to a tenant?

16.2       What are water efficient properties?

16.3       How can the lessor prove the property is water efficient?

16.4       Invoicing tenants for water


17.1       Lease renewal procedure

17.1.1    Factors to consider when carrying out a lease renewal

17.2       Rent increases

17.2.1    Rent increase - Fixed term to another fixed term agreement

17.2.2    Rent increase – Periodic agreement

17.2.3    Rent increase – Periodic agreement to fixed term agreement

17.2.4    Rent increase – During a fixed term agreement

17.2.5    Tenants’ rights in disputing a rent increase

17.3       Notice periods and rent increases

17.4       Minimum period before rent can be increased

17.5       Significant changes from one fixed term agreement to another fixed term agreement

17.6       Bond increases

17.7       Rent decreases
Chapter 18                         LAWFULLY ENDING A TENANCY

18.1       Ending a tenancy lawfully
18.2       Notice to leave – Form 12 - reasons a notice can be given to a tenant

18.2.1    Requirements for a notice to leave without grounds

18.2.2    Withdrawing a notice to leave for unremedied breach

18.3       Notice of intention to leave – Form 13

18.4       Death of a sole tenant

18.5       Order of Tribunal

18.5.1    Lessor/Agent applications to Tribunal

18.5.2    Tenant applications to Tribunal

18.6       Mutual agreement

18.7       Abandonment

18.7.1    Procedure for abandonment

18.8       Mortgagee in possession

18.8.1    Procedure for mortgagee in possession

18.9       Notice periods

Chapter 19                         VACATING THE PROPERTY

19.1       Exit condition report and when to carry out the final inspection

19.2       Inviting the tenant to the final inspection and tenant opportunity to attend to matters outstanding

19.3       Notice periods for termination (Lessor/Agent)

19.4       Goods left at the property

19.4.1    If goods are under $1500 in value

19.4.2    If goods are over $1500 in value

19.5       Documents left at the property

19.6       What to look for when carrying out a final inspection

19.7       Charging tenants for loss of rent compensation

19.8       Vacates and public holidays

 Chapter 20                         BOND REFUND PROCEDURES AND BOND DISPUTES

20.1       RTA bond refund procedure

20.2       If the bond is disputed by the tenant

20.3       If dispute resolution is not successful

20.4       Non urgent application to Tribunal

20.5       If the tenant makes claim to the bond prior to agency claim

 Chapter 21                         DISPUTES IN GENERAL

21.1       Self resolution tips

21.2       Objectionable behaviour of tenants

 Chapter 22                         TENANCY DEFAULT DATABASES

22.1       Reasons a tenant can be listed on a default tenancy database

22.2       What must occur prior to a tenant being listed on a defaulting database

22.3       Tenants’ rights about listings

22.4       Record keeping for listings

22.5       Common providers of database services

Chapter 23                         TIME MANAGEMENT

23.1       Property Management Tasks

23.2       Planning task and ideal day, week and month

Chapter 24                         FILING AND RECORD KEEPING

24.1       Filing procedures

24.2       Record keeping requirements and legislation

24.3       Electronic record keeping

Chapter 25                         FILES NOTES AND FOLLOW UP

25.1       File note procedures – computer and manual systems

25.2       Follow up procedures


26.1       Lessor termination of the management agreement

26.2       Agency termination of the management agreement

26.3       Handing over the property to the lessor or another agent

26.4       Lost property reporting

26.5       Death of a lessor

 Chapter 27                         TRUST ACCOUNTING

27.1       Receipting

27.2       Banking

27.3       Mid-month and end of month

27.4       What must be printed at end of month

27.5       Electronic back ups

27.6       Auditing requirements generally

27.7       Bond monies

27.8       Accounting to clients

27.9       Unclaimed monies from the trust account

27.10     Trust monies in dispute

27.11     Changing lessor or other third party banking details

27.12     Reconciliation of the trust account

27.13     Reversing trust account receipts

 Chapter 28                         RTA FORMS

Chapter 29                         KEYS AND THE KEY REGISTER

29.1       Logging of keys

29.2       Key register

29.3       Providing keys to a third party

Chapter 30                         QCAT – TRIBUNAL

30.1       An overview of Tribunal

30.2       Tribunal forms

30.3       Presenting in Tribunal

30.3.1    Representation of the lessor

30.4       Urgent and Non urgent applications

30.4.1    Example best practice completed urgent and non-urgent applications

30.5       Appeals

30.6       Reopening of applications

30.7       Enforcement of Tribunal decisions

30.8       Tribunal training CD

30.9       Published decisions and appeals


Chapter 32                         AGENCY POLICES IN GENERAL

32.1       Customer service communication policy

32.2       When staff are going on leave or are absent for more than one day

32.3       Privacy and confidentiality

32.4       Complaints policy

32.5       In the event of a claim being made against the agency

32.6       Staff security and safety

32.6.1    In the office

32.6.2    Out of the office

32.6.3    Driving and cars

32.6.4    Mobile phones and vehicles

32.6.5    Clothing for work

32.6.6    Social media use and policy

32.6.7    Job Description examples for Property Managers and Assistants

Chapter 33                         LANDLORD LISTING BOOKLET – CONTENTS

Chapter 34                         NATURAL DISASTERS AND RENTAL PROPERTY

34.1       Disaster management best practice guide

 Chapter 35                         TREE AND FENCING LAWS

35.1       An overview of tree and fencing laws for sales and rental property

Chapter 36                         DRUGS IN RENTAL PROPERTY

Chapter 37                         POOL SAFETY LAWS FOR SALES AND RENTAL PROPERTY