Abandoned Goods

If a tenant leaves something at your property, as in an unregistered car, how long do you have to wait before you can have it removed?

And what are your legal obligations for that?
 
If a tenant leaves something at your property, as in an unregistered car, how long do you have to wait before you can have it removed?

And what are your legal obligations for that?

In Qld, you can remove it from your property at tenant vacation, but need to hold on to it (in storage) and pay for the rental of the storage space for 3 months. This allows you to quickly turn your property around and get it back on the market and renting it out again.

If the tenant hasn't claimed for it within this 3 month timeframe, you can auction it or sell to retrieve money.

If they do come and claim for it, once they pay you the rental fee for storage, and any other loss from your property during the tenancy (loss of rental income, bond, damage, cleaning, etc), then they get the goods.

This is what I did with all my tenants belongings (BBQ, A/C, beds, etc, etc) wasn't a car though.

Good luck, hope it is a Ferrari:)

F
 
Mum had a tenant do a midnight flit last year, leaving some clothing and personal stuff in a bedroom. We had given this tenant the approproate notice to remedy breach (no rent paid for seven days) and notice to vacate etc, all in the right sequence. When the time period was up for us to be able to enter, we packed it up into one box and held it for the appropriate time (three months?). After that time, they were thrown out. We checked everything with the RTA, so if I have put the wrong times here in this post, it was kept for the right time (but just cannot remember in detail).

January this year we had a tenant leave at the end of the lease, moving countries. As far as we were aware the vehicle that was stored on the driveway inside the yard belonged to her brother. When she left, this vehicle had been moved onto the street outside the property. The tenant asked us about it, and as we could not contact the tenant, we checked with the police. It was unregistered, and her brother (assumed owner) worked overseas a lot.

As it was not registered, the council has placed appropriate notices on the vehicle, placed adverts in the newspaper and after appropriate time is elapsed, they will tow it and auction it.

I don't know what would happen if the vehicle had been left on the property, but as it was on the street, and particularly as it was unregistered, this is what has happened.

We could have done this as soon as she left, but as she was a friend of my mother, we did try to contact her and also tried to find her brother.
 
Sorry to off track the thread a bit, what happen if you can't determine they are abandoned goods or rubbish, do you still need to store them or could simply dump them.

Super.
 
Each State has its own legislation about storage or dumping. It usually depends on the value of the goods. High value goods will normally require storage, advertising, auction. In WA you can obtain an indemnity certificate which provides legal protection if you are sued by the tenant for dumping their valuable stuff.
 
For an indemnity certificate, how much it cost, and how to get it...:confused:

Recently a friend of mine has his tenants moved on, they have left several wardrobes behind, plus a large pile of old clothes, and some old kitchenwares, all items don't seem worth anything, but still usable, my friend just can't decide if he should store or dump, but he end up put all of them in the front yard with a big FREE sign for a few days, then call the council to take out the rest...:D

Super.
 
Indemnity certificates are free in WA and issued by the Department of Commerce. I just got one today as it happens. There is an official form you need to complete and submit along with photos. I always get one, just before ordering the skip bin.
 
If a tenant leaves something at your property, as in an unregistered car, how long do you have to wait before you can have it removed?


This happened to us about 4 years ago, when purchasing a warehouse.

Tenant simply buggered off and left the previous Landlord in the lurch for over 6 months. By the time we came along I wasn't interested in playing little lawyer games, as he clearly was too cluey for them, and had been around the block a few times.....and knew all the legal stuff....and knew he had zero obligations to move any of it.

The recalcitrant Tenant was a storage company, and had abandoned numerous bits and pieces, amounting to about 15 tonnes worth of stuff, including a nice Toyota Troop Carrier on big tyres and mud boots worth heaps.

Called the cops for assistance and they said they were powerless to do anything about it, but warned we had no right to touch anything, especially the car.

Called the manager of the Tenant and he said get stuffed.

Called the previous Owner, he said too bad - thankfully it's your problem now.

Squarely in my lap - OK - what to do now ??


Scratching head - could write a legal letter...nahh, been done 12 times already and all of them have been torn up in the previous Landlord's face. This guy doesn't speak that particular language.


Walked over to the mountain of boxes and files stacked on the mezzanine deck that they were storing (and still charging the accountants around the corner for storage....whilst paying me nothing to have them in my shed), ripped a few open and lo and behold there are tens of thousands of tax returns and confidential details of people all over Perth. You bewdy.


Placed about 5 select phone calls to influential customers of the accountants, who were horrified to learn that some scabby warehouse troll (me) had unfettered access to all of their personal files and was quoting TFN's, annual salaries and birthdates back to them, gently reminding them that their accountant was getting ripped off by paying storage to a crowd who was ripping me off. Gave my mobile # to all of them and said could you assist me please to secure your confidential data.


Waited less than 20 minutes before getting the expected irate call from the head duck of the accountancy firm insisting that I stop going through their records. I replied "Sure, no worries at all, as soon as you call up the manager of the Tenant and tell him to come and pick all of his cr@p up outta my shed....until then - no".


Had a cup of tea and waited another 20 minutes. The manager of the Tenant finally wanted to speak to me. Joy.


Gave it 3 more days of argy-bargy, and everything was clear and clean....including the car which was the worst to move. Noice.


Lesson learnt - good people will not stand having their financial data mucked with, and will move heaven and earth to protect it. Just gotta know which buttons to press.
 
Jenny, as the Qld legislation, has step by step instruction what to do with abandoned goods, I assume that the other states are likely to do as well. Here the question is, the value of the goods. Once you deem that the cost of packing, removal, storage and then subsequest sale, will exceed the value, you can then dispose of, by sale or dumping. You must sort throught however, and documents etc, considered important must be boxed and delivered to the public trustee. Should the owner arive to collect, you can only ask for the current costs, not the back rent etc. If there is a surplus on sale, that that can be applied to back rent. I had one former tenant, arive in the middle of my "abandoned goods disposal auction sale" with police it tow ... they postponed matters for about 3/4 of an hour, and finally accepted that I was acting within my rights .... copy of the act oven on the bonett of the police car, auction sale continued.
Good luck with your matters.
 
Placed about 5 select phone calls to influential customers of the accountants, who were horrified to learn that some scabby warehouse troll (me) had unfettered access to all of their personal files and was quoting TFN's, annual salaries and birthdates back to them, gently reminding them that their accountant was getting ripped off by paying storage to a crowd who was ripping me off. Gave my mobile # to all of them and said could you assist me please to secure your confidential data.

That's gold Dazz :)
 
This happened to us about 4 years ago, when purchasing a warehouse.

Tenant simply buggered off and left the previous Landlord in the lurch for over 6 months. By the time we came along I wasn't interested in playing little lawyer games, as he clearly was too cluey for them, and had been around the block a few times.....and knew all the legal stuff....and knew he had zero obligations to move any of it.

The recalcitrant Tenant was a storage company, and had abandoned numerous bits and pieces, amounting to about 15 tonnes worth of stuff, including a nice Toyota Troop Carrier on big tyres and mud boots worth heaps.

Called the cops for assistance and they said they were powerless to do anything about it, but warned we had no right to touch anything, especially the car.

Called the manager of the Tenant and he said get stuffed.

Called the previous Owner, he said too bad - thankfully it's your problem now.

Squarely in my lap - OK - what to do now ??


Scratching head - could write a legal letter...nahh, been done 12 times already and all of them have been torn up in the previous Landlord's face. This guy doesn't speak that particular language.


Walked over to the mountain of boxes and files stacked on the mezzanine deck that they were storing (and still charging the accountants around the corner for storage....whilst paying me nothing to have them in my shed), ripped a few open and lo and behold there are tens of thousands of tax returns and confidential details of people all over Perth. You bewdy.


Placed about 5 select phone calls to influential customers of the accountants, who were horrified to learn that some scabby warehouse troll (me) had unfettered access to all of their personal files and was quoting TFN's, annual salaries and birthdates back to them, gently reminding them that their accountant was getting ripped off by paying storage to a crowd who was ripping me off. Gave my mobile # to all of them and said could you assist me please to secure your confidential data.


Waited less than 20 minutes before getting the expected irate call from the head duck of the accountancy firm insisting that I stop going through their records. I replied "Sure, no worries at all, as soon as you call up the manager of the Tenant and tell him to come and pick all of his cr@p up outta my shed....until then - no".


Had a cup of tea and waited another 20 minutes. The manager of the Tenant finally wanted to speak to me. Joy.


Gave it 3 more days of argy-bargy, and everything was clear and clean....including the car which was the worst to move. Noice.


Lesson learnt - good people will not stand having their financial data mucked with, and will move heaven and earth to protect it. Just gotta know which buttons to press.

Brilliant work.

I personally would have taken a few roof sheets off and let their stuff get wrecked by the weather.

Or if in a residential property picked up the stuff, dumped it, then claimed there was a break in. At the end of the day it's your word against theirs. Tenants lie and don't play by the rules so why should we.
 
Or if in a residential property picked up the stuff, dumped it, then claimed there was a break in. At the end of the day it's your word against theirs. Tenants lie and don't play by the rules so why should we.

I'd hope that nobody else here would think the same way; surely ethics still have a place in property investment.

And you know that'd be a criminal offence, right?
 
I'd hope that nobody else here would think the same way; surely ethics still have a place in property investment.

And you know that'd be a criminal offence, right?

And only you and I have to have some 'ethics'? Your tenants, who are too busy with their bongs, don't have to have any 'ethics', at all?


Come on, you cannot be that naive.
 
And only you and I have to have some 'ethics'? Your tenants, who are too busy with their bongs, don't have to have any 'ethics', at all?


Come on, you cannot be that naive.


I don't compromise my own ethics in response to someone else compromising theirs. Rightly or wrongly (and yes, I'll admit; somewhat naively), I tend to expect the same of others.
 
And only you and I have to have some 'ethics'? Your tenants, who are too busy with their bongs, don't have to have any 'ethics', at all?


Come on, you cannot be that naive.

You cannot be that naive either, since when are all tenants trash? Now don't get me wrong, i've seen the good, bad and the ugly - but don't judge a book by its cover.

Obviously you've picked up a bad tenant - we will not deny that, BUT you were given the LEGAL answer and legislation.

Now if some tenant left cr@p in my yard, i'd be angry, no denying that, but it's easier (i think) to play by the rules.

I feel you perhaps have a biased opinion due to one bad experience, it's a shame really. Maybe you should rethink the way in which you wish to play this?
 
Top