Landlady Brenda Bryant, of Goonellabah, shows one of the holes that needs to be repaired to property manager Amanda Ryan.
Landlady Brenda Bryant, of Goonellabah, shows one of the holes that needs to be repaired to property manager Amanda Ryan. Jay Cronan

Landlady cops damage worth $8000

FIRST-TIME landlady Brenda Bryant is ruing the day she privately rented her father’s Goon-ellabah home.

Unaware of the pitfalls, she rented the house to a young family she felt sorry for two years ago, but estimates she has now been left almost $8000 in the red.

The tenants were almost $4000 behind on rent and she expects a repair bill for damages for about the same amount.

Following a successful action in the NSW Tenancy Tribunal, the tenants have agreed to pay Ms Bryant the back rent at $50 a week, but that won’t cover the damages.

Amanda Ryan, of LJ Hooker real estate in Lismore, helped Mrs Bryant through the complex tribunal process and said the whole ordeal was a classic cautionary tale with which she was all too familiar.

She hopes Mrs Bryant’s story may help others avoid the same fate.

Ms Ryan is managing the repairs and renting of the house before it is put on the market for sale.

“If Brenda had got an agent to find a tenant it may have been a different story,” she said.

“We could’ve vetted the tenants and checked them out.

“We have access to the bad tenants registry that private landlords don’t have.”

Ms Ryan said she was happy to provide private landlords free advice and, for a modest fee, could find them a tenant, draw up a lease and lodge the bond with the Rental Bond Board through the Department of Fair Trading.

“That puts them on track to manage it themselves, or we can continue management if they prefer,” she said.

Mrs Bryant said she could not believe the damage when she got access to the house.

“It was all freshly painted in a neutral colour, with new fly screens and basically a new kitchen when they moved in,” she said.

“But they repainted it orange and got paint all over the timber trims and skirtings.

“There are holes in the walls and doors, kitchen floor tiles are broken and the new stove top is ruined, as are all the flyscreens.”

Ms Ryan said there were a few key points to follow when renting a property.

“What we want to get across to private landlords is that it is important to nip any problems in the bud,” she said.

“You need to monitor the situation closely and handle any damages, arrears, noise or nuisance issues straight away.”

Mrs Bryant said she was happy to let the real estate agent handle this time.

“I’ve got a bit of a soft heart and I picked them because they needed it,” she said.



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