Queenstown +64 (0) 3 442 3815
Wanaka +64 (0) 3 443 6921

Statements - How to Read Your Housemart Statement

Posted on 19 June 2014

 

How to Read And Understand Your Rental Statement
Statement Type: Details
1. Opening Balance: The amount brought forward from last month. In most cases this is
$0.00 but sometimes money may have been held back for some reason i.e to pay an
invoice.
2. Income: Shows the date of the transaction, what type of transaction i.e rent, who paid it
in, what period it covers, the internal transaction number, the receipt reference, the
amount paid and then the breakdown of the management fee and GST amounts.
3. Expenses: Shows the date of the transactions, what type of transaction i.e fees or invoice,
details of the expense, the internal transaction number, the payment reference, the amount
of the expense, then the fee breakdown and GST.
4. Keep Back: This will only show if your Property Manager has needed to keep back some
money to pay an upcoming expense.
5. Credited to Your Account: This shows how much money has been physically paid out to
you.
The first column shows the total of income – expenses for the month
The second and third columns minus the total fees and GST amounts
The third column is the total of the first column less column 2 & 3 and becomes
the amount that will be paid out to you.
1
2
3
4
5

 

Click here to to find out how to read your statement

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Residential Property Management Agency of the Year

Posted on 20 August 2012

Queenstown and Wanaka property management agency Housemart has returned home from the 2012 Property Management Awards with ‘a bagful’ of accolades including Property Management Agency of the Year.

Housemart director Hayley Stevenson said they had good reason to celebrate with members of the property management agency’s team being recognised.

“It’s absolutely huge for Housemart to have won this,” she said.  “It was a fantastic surprise after our staff successes throughout the night to be announced the overall agency winner, we were stunned.”

The award winning team

The winning Housemart team (L-R) Katrina Roberts, Hayley Stevenson, Colleen Topping & Andrea Bono

The 2012 Awards for Excellence in Residential Property Management were announced in Hamilton on Saturday night (August 18) and attended by property management professionals from around New Zealand.  The annual event is run by the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) and recognises excellence in agencies and individuals within the residential property management sector.

Housemart Property Manager Katrina Roberts won Residential Property Manager of the Year with colleague Colleen Topping taking out the runner-up position in the same category. Andrea Bono from Housemart’s Wanaka office was named Residential Property Management Support Staff Person of the Year.

“We are also absolutely thrilled for everyone who works with the company, for our clients, our tradespeople, for the tenants who recommend us and families associated with Housemart,” said Ms Stevenson.

“We operate from small offices in Queenstown and Wanaka, so for a company that’s relatively young and new this is incredible.”

Operating for two years, Housemart was able to demonstrate a number of significant achievements as part of its award-winning agency entry, including a 171% growth in new managements, consistent accuracy on property reporting and documentation, and a zero tolerance policy for rent arrears.

“This year’s awards were focussed on consistency in excellence,” said Ms Stevenson. “We have systems that are so well established, and structures that are so well documented and followed through, that we deliver consistent, reliable and excellent service time after time. We don’t do hit and miss.

“We work exceptionally hard but my team all know I emphasise that we have a good work-life balance and we’re very much involved with our local communities, for example having recently raised more than $8,000 for the Cancer Society.”

Housemart has tasted success at the property management awards in the past, taking out individual awards for its property management team.  It has been a finalist for property management agency of the year for the past two years.

“It’s good to finally be the bride and not the bridesmaid,” said Ms Stevenson. “If you looked at the calibre of the other finalists, we were up against big corporate property management companies, feeling we were very much the smaller underdog.  Victory is so sweet because they didn’t see us coming.”

Housemart launched in Wanaka in 2010 with the Queenstown branch opening in Terrace Junction later that year. The company is highly systemised and offers a premium customer experience, with rental property portfolios exclusive to Wanaka and Queenstown.

Ms Stevenson, who has twice won the top REINZ Property Management award, said the company’s proven integrity and standards has been paramount in growing the business despite increased competition in the local market.

The five categories at the awards all relate to the residential market and are Property Management Agency of the Year, Property Manager Rookie of the Year, Property Management Business Development Manager of the Year, Property Manager of the Year, and Property Management Support Staff Person of the Year.

For more information please contact:

Hayley Stevenson
Housemart Queenstown
Tel: 03 442 3815
E: katrina@housemart.co.nz

OR

Fiona Woodham
Southern PR
Tel: 03 441 1117
E: fiona@southernpr.co.nz

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Winter Survival Tips

Posted on 11 July 2012

Winter Survival Tips

GARDEN MAINTENANCE

Now is the time to check that your pathways and drains are clear of leaves and other debris. Blocked drains will cause a real problem when the spring thaw comes around.

Gutters and Downpipes can get clogged with leaves – keep an eye out for build ups and let us know at Housemart.

 

FROZEN PIPES

A common problem in the region, so you need to take some precautions:

  • Keep your home reasonably warm.
  • Know where the shutoff valve for your mains water pressure is and leave a cold tap running in the lowest point of the house on particularly cold nights. Running water doesn’t usually freeze – just make sure that you don’t inadvertently cause a flood by leaving something blocking the sink!
  • If you’re going away for the weekend or longer, turn off the cold water supply and drain the water from the pipes by leaving a cold water tap running in the lowest point of the house.
  • If your pipes do freeze then don’t try to defrost them- you could end up with even more of a problem – let them defrost naturally. Keep a supply of water in a sink/bucket/bath if you think you might have a problem. That way you can at least flush the loo or make a cup of tea! 

CONDENSATION and MILDEW

As the weather turns cold and we tend to close our houses up, condensation can become a problem.  Is caused by trying to heat damp air and a lack of ventilation - try the following:

  1. Open your windows for a short time each day (especially bathrooms/kitchens where moisture builds up).
  2. Check the ventilation slots in your windows to make sure they are not clogged up.
  3. Use a dehumidifier if you have one to reduce the amount of moisture in the air.
  4. Check door seals for draughts – a rolled up towel can be a simple solution to a gap under the door

Remember: NO PORTABLE GAS HEATERS are to be used in your property.

 

FIREPLACES & WOOD BURNERS

If you have a fireplace your chimney should have been checked and swept ready for the winter. If you are not sure it has been done, give us a call and we will organize it.

 Be sure you have a heat-safe metal bucket or can with a lid to store hot ashes from your fireplace. 

 

POWER OUTAGES

Winter can be a time when your power supply may be interrupted temporarily. If there’s a problem, contact your power company direct. Keep a torch handy just in case.

Trustpower  0800 878787     Contact Energy: 0800 809 000    Meridian Energy: 0800 496 496

 

WHEN IT DOES SNOW

If you have a car, make sure you have anti-freeze in the radiator and chains that fit your wheels stashed in the boot – before it snows!

Invest in a good outdoor broom and sweep the snow away from pathways and driveways BEFORE anyone drives/walks over it, or melts and refreezes – that’s when it can get really icy.

Be sure to build at least one snow man and have a snowball fight!

 

 MAINTENANCE REQUESTS

Contact Housemart to request a maintenance job

 

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Moving House Tips

Posted on 18 February 2012

Moving House Tips

It’s always nice to get things for free, however when moving house, freebies are unfortunately few and far between. Even enlisting the help of your friends and loved ones might require some sort of bribe or promise to return the favour. In saying that, the crew at movinghousetips.co.nz have put together a list of all the free (or very cheap!) services which might make your next move just a bit easier.

www.smartmove.co.nz
If you are looking to enlist professionals for your next move, try Smart Move to get accurate quotes from multiple companies at once – for free! Smart Move works by taking the particulars provided by you and then sends them to various reputable moving companies in your area. Those companies will then come back to you with their best price, leaving you to decide who you want to employ. www.moving-companies.co.nz provide a similar service to compare NZ moving companies.

www.powerswitch.co.nz
Power Switch provide a free and impartial service to help New Zealanders find low cost power providers. They have a comprehensive database of electricity and gas prices to help you determine which company and pricing plan is best for you. They also have information on contracts, making complaints, price trends and energy saving tips for your home.
www.switchme.co.nz provide a similar service to compare and switch power companies.

www.fastconnect.co.nz
Fast Connect provide a free, nationwide utility connection service. They can arrange new connections or transfer existing accounts for your electricity, gas, telephone, internet and Sky TV. As well as being a free service, they have a number of great promotions to help save you money when you move. You can call them free or go online to complete an application.

www.consumerbuild.org.nz
Consumer Build provides a range of clear, independent and up-to-date information on building, buying, renovating and maintain houses in New Zealand. They can guide you through your responsibilities under the Building Act and other relevant legislation, help you locate and work with builders, subcontractors and building professionals and give good, practical advice about what you can and can’t do yourself.

www.telme.org.nz
Similar to Power Switch, Consumer TelMe is another government funded site designed to help you save money on your utilities. The service allows you to compare prices on landline, internet, mobile phone and pay TV services to work out which combination will work best for you. They do this by taking a snapshot of your current or projected telecommunications usage and then giving you a variety of options ranked on price.

www.energywise.govt.nz
Energy Wise is a fairly recent government initiative which is trying to make New Zealand homes more energy efficient. The website has a plethora of information about energy efficient heating and lighting for homes, and tips to help you save on your electric bill. The main benefit of Energy Wise however will come if you are looking to install insulation or efficient heating systems (i.e. a heat pump). Do a quick test online to see if you are eligible for a significant subsidy to help you cover the costs of these items.

www.nzpost.co.nz
You can use the “ChangeMyAddress” service from New Zealand Post to notify multiple organisations at once of your change of address. The service is free and organisations you can notify include government organisations, charities and finance companies.

 

This post was brought to you by Moving House Tips

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Inspecting My Property

Posted on 5 January 2012

Do you inspect the property at the beginning of a tenancy?

Your Property Manager makes a detailed Property Condition Report with photos to record the condition of your property before tenants move in. 

We inspect your property area by area (lounge room, bedrooms, kitchen, front and rear yards, garage etc) and then all items present in each area (walls, ceiling, light fittings, curtains, windows, stove etc). 

We record their condition and cleanliness item by item, and a brief description of item (e.g. details of any marks, scratches and dents).  We take photos outside, as well as inside the property (where required). 

We also itemise the chattels or you can give us a chattels list. Your tenant is given a copy of the report when they move in and have 10 working days to make any changes. 

How often do you inspect the property during the tenancy?

We inspect the property approximately every 3-4 months – this helps us to make sure your property is being looked after.  We let your tenants know 7 days before an inspection, and provide them with a form where they can note any maintenance issues or concerns.

The inspections allow us to check room-by-room that the tenant is keeping the property damage-free and reasonably clean, and can capture any maintenance issues that have not been reported.

We keep you informed with a written report including photos, and contact you if maintenance may cost more than $350.00. If the tenant has caused the damage, we will ask them to pay for repairs and follow-up reimbursement for you.

What about when the tenant vacates the property?

When the tenant lets us know they will be vacating, we send them detailed information on our expectations of how the property needs to be presented.

Final Inspections are completed on the next available working day after a Tenancy has ended.

On the next available working day after the tenant official vacating date, we complete a final inspection, comparing the property in detail to the Property Condition Report we did when the tenant moved into the property.

We carefully check through the report item-by-item, making sure it has been left in the same condition as when they moved in, taking into account reasonable wear and tear for the period of time they have been in the property. This is a legislative requirement.

We make sure the property has been left reasonably clean and check the smoke alarms.

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Receiving My Rent Money

Posted on 5 January 2012

When do I get paid my rent?

We deposit your rental income into your bank twice every month, on the 1st and the 15th day of each month (or closest working day).

How do you collect the rent?

We always collect the rent by Automatic Payment 

What happens if my tenant does not pay the rent?

We have a ‘Zero Tolerance’ policy for rent arrears.  Rent payments are checked every day and if a tenant does get behind in their rent payments, this is the process we follow:

1 Day Behind – we send a text message or phone to tell the tenant their rent is overdue and request immediate payment.

4 Days Behind – we send a letter advising the tenants that they are in breach of their obligations under the tenancy agreement and further action will be taken if their rent is not received.

7 days behind – we complete an Application for Order of the Tenancy Tribunal under S54 of the Residential Tenancies Act and advise the tenant via phone or text that we are lodging a court application today.  We visit the property to check for abandonment if we have been unable to contact the tenants.

In most cases, either the first or the second course of action will cause an immediate response or payment from the tenant (many tenants have a genuine reason for the lapse and are quick to remedy the problem).  

If we do have to terminate a tenancy, the time taken to achieve termination varies depending on the length of time the Tribunal takes to arrange a hearing. This is out of our control, and can be up to three weeks in some cases.  

Housemart request four weeks rent as bond – this is the maximum amount we can request under the Residential Tenancy Act, so we can at least minimise any shortfall.

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Pets at My Property

Posted on 5 January 2012

If I Allow Dog/s At My Property, What Expectations Will Be Given To The Tenant?

If you decide to allow pets at your property, we always use a pet clause in our agreement with your tenant:

 

  • No additional pet may occupy the property without prior permission.
  • It can be stipulated that the pet may not come inside the property.
  • The pet must be removed from the property if it becomes annoying to neighbours (after reasonable warning has been given in writing).
  • The tenant must be responsible for any damage caused by their pet, and remove any rubbish or pet droppings.
  • The pet clause stipulates that the carpets must be professionally cleaned when the tenant vacates your property.
  • We also record the details of the pet on the agreement, which is then signed by the tenant.

How Do I Ensure The Pet Will Not Come Inside The Property?

The tenant makes a commitment in writing that they will not bring the pet inside. However as we are unable to monitor the property all of the time, we cannot guarantee that the pet will not come inside the property.

We do look out for any warning signs when we are at the property conducting inspections. But the only way to ensure no pets will come inside the property is to insist ‘No Pets’ right from the start of the tenancy.

 

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Property Presentation

Posted on 5 January 2012

How Should The Property Be Presented?

To get the right tenant for your property, it must be presented in the best possible light. That means your property needs to be spotlessly clean, with any repairs and maintenance completed. We’ve all heard the cliché “first impressions last”, and in our experience they do!  So it’s also a good idea to have the outside of your property looking tidy and well maintained, as well as the interior.

How Clean Should The Property Be When A New Tenant Moves In?

Tenancy legislation requires that the property should be presented ‘reasonably clean’.

As a guide, we ask the tenant to leave the property at the standard they found the property – so if it starts spotlessly clean, it’s more likely to be left that way!

However in the case of a dispute, legally we can only enforce that the tenant return the property to a ‘reasonably clean’ condition, this being their minimum legal obligation.

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The Marketing of My Property

Posted on 5 January 2012

What Do You Do To Advertise My Property?

Once we have a signed Management Agreement authorising us to act on your behalf, we list your property in the following forms of advertising:

  1. Newspaper - We advertise your property along with all our available property listings in the Upper Clutha Messenger.  Our ad is placed with details of your property and the rental amount.
  2. Property Rentals Handout - Your property is added to our Rental listings handout.  The list is updated daily and includes a photo and details of your property. This is given to anyone that comes in to our offices looking for a rental property.
  3. Window Display – your property is advertised in our window display, allowing easy access after hours.
  4. Internet - Your property along with photos is placed on the following websites, maximising coverage for any tenant using the Internet to locate a rental property.

    a)    The National Housemart website www.housemart.co.nz
    b)    www.trademe.co.nz
    c)    www.realestate.co.nz

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Getting the Best Tenant

Posted on 3 December 2011

How Does Someone Apply For My Property?

Each prospective tenant completes an application with references, income details and rental history. They sign to give us permission to check the information provided.

What If An Applicant Contacts Me?

We never supply your contact details to any applicant. If a prospective tenant does manage to contact you to discuss their application, or question why their application has been rejected, always ask them to contact us at Housemart. Please never discuss anything with a prospective tenant, particularly a rejected application – this can cause unnecessary problems and complications. After all, why suffer the headaches? We are here to solve the problems and do the-leg work for you.

How Do You Check An Applicant?

We check references and credit background for every tenant, and help you make a final choice. We confirm each applicant’s payment and tenancy history by calling their current and/or previous landlord or agent. We confirm their employment, and check them against a National Database which searches:

  • Ministry of Justice Tenancy Tribunal orders
  • The C.I.A. Debt Recovery Group Ltd www.cia.co.nz,
  • T.I.N.Z. (Tenancy Information NZ) database
  • VEDA ADVANTAGE (previously BAYCORP)

If an applicant has no tenancy history we follow up alternative references, like employers or character references to establish whether they may be good tenants for your property.

We also trust our gut feeling! In general, we err on the side of caution – it’s all about getting the right tenant for your property from the outset.

What reason do you have to give the applicant to reject their application?

Legally we do not have to give a reason. Housemart policy is to never give a reason (this is the best way to avoid complaints from the applicant).

Who selects the applicant for my property?

We give you all the details you need to make an informed decision. We can help with guidance based on our background and experience in property management. But at the end of the day, the choice is yours.

Do You Guarantee The Tenant?

We can’t guarantee any tenant. However, we do our best to minimize your risk by following meticulous application and checking procedures.

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