Eviction/bailiff advice/experience

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by lifelonglearner, 10th Jun, 2009.

  1. lifelonglearner

    lifelonglearner Member

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    Hi all you helpful people, thanks so much for the advice etc. offered regarding http://www.somersoft.com/forums/showthread.php?t=52940

    We received a court order this morning for end of lease, possession of premises (due to unpaid rent) and immediate eviction (due to threats to and damage to neighbours properties). We now realise 'immediate' means until midnight, though we can only apply for a bailiff in the morning, and the bailiff may then take a few days to get there, though it's likely he'd get there tomorrow.

    Please may I have some advice?

    The tenant did not appear at court again. We can phone the tenant (and extra 9 people) and tell them we have the order for them to be out by midnight (the way the courts prefer) or not - this would be the only way he'd be informed of the order.

    Benefit of telling them would be that they move out themselves and we don't have to pay the $400 tomorrow for a bailiff.

    Reasons not to would be fear of them wrecking the property further while 'moving out', fear of them taking things e.g. fridge, stove..........that should be left, fear of them doing any more damage to neighbour's property (an elderly lady that has had to call the police often and so has had abuse from them, threats, her outdoor furniture and flyscreens broken and fuses all stolen)or person.

    However they also may then retaliate (especially if we just appear with a bailiff without warning) as they have been to our residence before and could come seeking revenge (we have parents living here, I'm heavily pregnant and we have 3 little children 3yrs and under).

    We are considering having someone go down to the unit and spend the night in a car to try to ensure they don't wreck the place (if we do decide to warn them), or asking a neighbour to phone us when they start moving out or if they start causing trouble so that cops can be called.

    What have others decided to do? How did it pan out?

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. Propertunity

    Propertunity Real Estate Buyers Agent

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    Don't do any of that crap - too dangerous & a legal minefield if it goes wrong. It is just a house, a possession. Do the legal thing with the sherrif or bailiff and let them do their job. $400 is cheap - and you keep your nose clean.

    I've only had to do it once - stayed right out of it. Tenant did a runner & left the keys on the kitchen table - and the doors and windows open. All OK with a new tenant a few weeks later - all a distant memory.
     
  3. wylie

    wylie Member

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    Great that you can get them out, but not so good that you are worried about your personal safety.

    Thinking through both scenarios, firstly I thought I would let them know now, but you risk them taking the fridge and anything else. To be honest, I would risk them taking the fridge and stove, because that may satisfy any need for "revenge" and get it out of their system.

    Only thing is, that they may also decide to take a hammer to the walls, or similar, in which case, if you don't have insurance, will cost a motza to fix.

    If the bailiff arrives on their doorstep without notice it is less likely that they will damage things as they leave, but still possible. I have never seen a bailiff in action, so don't know how much "muscle" they bring with them, or if it is just one man with a bit of paper telling them to leave..... NOW.

    I empathise with you because when I was very pregnant with our middle child, we had a female tenant go off the rails, and her partner called to our house to let us know she had done "time" for stabbing someone to "see what it felt like". I understand how you feel. I was quite worried, very stressed and this is one downside of the tenant knowing where we (and you) live.

    In 30 years of being a landlord though, this time and one time a few years ago are the only times I was worried about being in the "firing line" of a slightly deranged tenant. Both times things turned out okay with no/little damage, so don't let the worry make you ill.

    I think I would probably let the bailiff do the task and stay well clear so that seeing you or your hubby will not inflame them. If they are angry, they will likely be immediately angry with the bailiff, who probably has to deal with this regularly, and will know how to defuse things (fingers crossed).

    If they knew the court case was today, and didn't show up, they probably know that they are going to be evicted anyway.

    I really feel for what you are going through. Please let us know how it goes.
     
  4. wylie

    wylie Member

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    While I was typing, I missed Proportunity's post. Reading it made me think of something we did with the recent incident with a chap who apparently had been on speed and so was not rational at all.

    Once he and his girlfriend and mate were gone, we had a locksmith change the key part of the lock so that if they decided to come back they could not get in. Last thing I wanted was our next tenant to have someone let themselves in.

    That would be money well spent. If the lock is not the type that you can just change the lock part, and if you have to get a locksmith, perhaps it would be worthwhile having him put deadbolts on all external doors, so that you can change just the central lock part (I am sure it has a proper name ..... barrel?) in future if you ever need or want to.
     
  5. L and P

    L and P Member

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    Goodness :eek: You poor thing. What a worry for you.

    I agree with letting them take the fridge, stove, whatever if that means they are gone and leave you in peace. Really, even if they smash up the place that is a smaller price to pay than personal injury.

    I hope it all goes well.
    Stay safe and please let us know how you get on.
     
  6. skater

    skater Capitalist

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    Just stay out of it & allow the Bailiff to do their job. Make sure you have a locksmith booked too.
     
  7. jaycee

    jaycee Member

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    some have suggsted they do this between tenants anyway. Good luck.
     
  8. lifelonglearner

    lifelonglearner Member

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    Thanks all, we have decided to just let the bailiff do their thing and then change locks. I feel if they're going to retaliate, they would/could do so in either case.

    I originally thought the bailiff moved the stuff (from advice I'd received from another owner of the units) but that seems to be untrue. Does anyone know what I can/can't do with all their stuff?
     
  9. skater

    skater Capitalist

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    In NSW, you have to pay to store the stuff. Hopefully they will have somewhere it can be taken to.
     
  10. L and P

    L and P Member

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    Just came in to see how things went - well I hope :cool:
     
  11. lifelonglearner

    lifelonglearner Member

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    Thanks for the interest.

    We decided not to inform tenant yesterday, as while we may have a slight level of trust in HIS decency we have nil in his 'wifes' or offsprings, and he works so is away all day.

    Person I phoned at court yesterday told me if the form was in first thing in the morning, they'd do their paperwork and it'd be in the bailiff's pigeonhole immediately for him to pick up. He checks his hole periodically throughout the day and it may happen same day depending on business of bailiff.

    Today I lodged form 6 first thing to organise bailiff all ready for action today I thought. Person I lodged it with seemed to be new, took forever, had to keep going to get help, advice. Told me forms only get sent out to bailiff in a batch late afternoon. I went back in the queue to try to re-ask same question to another employee, but after waiting for AGES gave up and thought I'd phone from home. Phoned and got a grumpy man who said, paperwork has been done by them, they should then have put it in the pigeonhole, but he can't guarantee and is not going to go and check as it's not his job to check on another person's work.

    Rang the bailiff's office (should have done this MUCH earlier). Turns out the IMMEDIATE eviction means 5 or more days as bailiff only does one eviction per day, (?????????why???) first thing in the morning and tomorrow was already booked so I have managed to get him 9.30am Monday. (Amazing how IMMEDIATE EVICITON still actually means 5 or more days, what does eviction after 28 days mean?). There is also only 1 bailiff working for that area so there is no other bailiff I can try to go to to get eviction earlier. The bailiff will deliver a letter personally tomorrow afternoon (why he can't evict at the same time then I don't know?) warning them of eviction Monday. Helpful secretary said she believed this was a courtesy letter that could potentially be stopped. I said yes please as I still have fear of safety and fear of damage by unruly family while father is away. This has been put to the bailiff but I will have to check in the morning whether or not a letter will get delivered or not.

    We feel our actual tenant would probably not cause malicious damage, but cannot vouch for his 'wife' or brood and so we wanted bailiff there and the ‘family’ OUT without any warning giving time to wreck the house, other's property or threaten your mum further. Once we have changed locks and they reappear we would have more weight with calling police, and they would need to be semi civil to get their stuff (if there is anything of worth there).

    My husband would like to personally phone the tenant (the 'father' of the large family) on Saturday morning to warn him due to courtesy. They would then have the weekend to go, father would hopefully be around and not allow family to wreck the place too much (??????/maybe). He could then judge the reaction and decide whether we need to try to keep tabs on the unit over the weekend or not. Means we would not be left with their stuff and also potentially when the bailiff comes Monday, if they haven't moved they wouldn't be so surprised and mad as they would (yet again) have had warning.

    We can not do anything before the bailiff goes in on Monday to 'enact' the law allowing us to change lock and now 'own' the property and cause the current tenant and hangers on to be considered tresspassers by the police.

    .......So, I wonder, if tenant moves out happily on weekend, how do we determine/prove that they have moved out? Allowing to potentially change locks earlier and stop family coming back in Monday with their key, between when the dad's at work and the bailiff comes, to do damage with no property held inside (except rubbish I suspect) as a bargaining factor. Does this make sense? I'm just musing. How easy to come back and trash it, set it alight and then how do we prove who it was etc.........., can you call the cops if someone sets 'their own' premises alight? I just don't know the potential of the 19year old son who has already retaliated maliciously to tiny things and to the 14year old son who has been expelled from school and happily hacks things with his hunting knife, and the irate mother who brakes things during tantrums and obviously can drive back to the property to do the damage.

    Sorry it's a long rambling update.

    BTW, the magistrate ordered the tenant to pay the $26.80 fees for the court hearing (no more as we hadn't asked for it). It will cost me over $140 to get that acted upon. When we do go back to court asking for the unpaid rent, damage costs and other court fees, that will be a court case number and so we will have to pay $140 plus (could be a fair bit more as you pay mileage and time taken to get to their new place of residence from the court) to get that order enacted upon, but can't include the $26.80 as it's under another court number, and as it's already been awarded an order, can't get it transferred to new claim. What a waste of resources all round. So magistrate potentially wasn't helpful in ordering that to be paid, unless tenant feels nice and compelled to pay it.
     
  12. Propertunity

    Propertunity Real Estate Buyers Agent

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    Thank-you for the imagery......I don't know that I needed that but it was the first laugh of the day for me - so thank-you.:D:D

    One word of advice, it is stressful for you - and anyone in that situation - but at the end of the day - "Don't sweat the small stuff"

    They'll be gone soon and you'll either have it back in good condition or damaged. Damage can be repaired and life goes on. Lesson learned.
     
  13. lifelonglearner

    lifelonglearner Member

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    Thank-you, I am managing to be removed from the situation. Reading these boards has helped tremendously as people are so positive and have gone on to achieve amazing things after similar or worse incidences. It is such a SLOW process, I'm just taking it one day at a time. I just get mad thinking how we scrimp and save, yet are paying $50 per day for 10 people to live at our expense causing further damage, and that there is nothing we can do except WAIT for the small rights we have to be effected through the courts in their SLOW time. My husband is excellent at calming me down if I get heated about it. I just wish to esure I document my WHOLE experience for our records so that I hopefully don't have to repeat it.
     
  14. Dazz

    Dazz Banned

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    What are the positive lessons you have taken away and can share with the forum from your still to be concluded "experience" lifelonglearner ??
     
  15. lifelonglearner

    lifelonglearner Member

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    I'll mull that question over a little longer before replying.

    We contacted tenant today, who said, "Oh well, I'll just have to wait and speak to the bailiff on Monday."

    WHAT??? So he will still be there. He's obviously not fazed by the bailiff and I wonder..........probably has had dealings with them before and knows he might have a chance to wangle some more time. Does anyone know what exactly he could do/say to get a reprieve?

    Can I ever just move in and claim poverty cos I can't now pay my own rent? Would he then have to go to court to try to remove me? Would it also take months? Might be an interesting option. Maybe I could PAY some bikies to move in.

    Anyway: my husband is in government and received this email from a collegue who is currently working with the tenant (a client of theirs) in this recent TRUE communication. Made me smile. Wish I could have this attitude with the law etc. My tenant seems to this attitude without the humour.

    From: Tenant
    Date: Thursday 21 May 2009 10.16am
    To: Property Manager
    Subject: Pets in the building

    Dear Property Manager,

    Thankyou for your letter concerning pets in my apartment. I understand that having dogs in the apartment is a violation of the agreement due to the comfort and wellbeing of my neighbours and I am currently soundproofing my apartment with egg cartons as I realise my dogs can cause quite a bit of noise. Especially during feeding time when I release live rabbits.

    Regards, Tenant.


    From: Property Manager
    Date: Thursday 21 May 2009 11.18am
    To: Tenant
    Subject: Re: Pets in the building

    Hello Tenant

    I have received your email and wish to remind you that the strata agreement states that no animals are allowed in the building regardless of if your apartment is soundproof. How many dogs do you have at the premises?

    Property Manager


    From: Tenant
    Date: Thursday 21 May 2009 1.52pm
    To: Property Manager
    Subject: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    Dear Property Manager,

    Currently I only have eight dogs but one is expecting puppies and I am very excited by this. I am hoping for a litter of at least ten as this is the number required to participate in dog sled racing. I have read every Jack London novel in preparation and have constructed my own sled from timber I borrowed from the construction site across the road during the night. I have devised a plan which I feel will ensure me taking first place in the next national dog sled championships. For the first year of the puppies life I intend to say the word mush then chase them violently around the apartment while yelling and hitting saucepan lids together. I have estimated that the soundproofing of my apartment should block out at least sixty percent of the noise and the dogs will learn to associate the word mush with great fear so when I yell it on race day, the panic and released adrenaline will spur them on to being winners. I am so confident of this being a foolproof plan that I intend to sell all my furniture the day before the race and bet the proceeds on coming first place.

    Regards, Tenant.


    From: Property Manager
    Date: Friday 22 May 2009 9.43am
    To: Tenant
    Subject: Re: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    David, I am unsure what to make of your email. Do you have pets in the apartment or not?

    Property Manager


    From: Tenant
    Date: Friday 22 May 2009 11.27am
    To: Property Manager
    Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    Dear Property Manager,

    No. I have a goldfish but due to the air conditioner in my apartment being stuck on a constant two degrees celcius, the water in its bowl is iced over and he has not moved for a while so I do not think he is capable of disturbing the neighbours. The ducks in the bathroom are not mine. The noise which my neighbours possibly mistook for a dog in the apartment is just the looping tape I have of dogs barking which I play at high volume while I am at work to deter potential burglars from breaking in and stealing my tupperware. I need it to keep food fresh. Once I ate leftover chinese that had been kept in an unsealed container and I experienced complete awareness. The next night I tried eating it again but only experienced chest pains and diarrhoea.

    Regards, Tenant.


    From: Property Manager
    Date: Friday 22 May 2009 1.46pm
    To: Tenant
    Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    Hello Tenant

    You cannot play sounds of dogs or any noise at a volume that disturbs others. I am sure you can appreciate that these rules are for the benefit of all residents of the building. Fish are fine. You cannot have ducks in the apartment though. If it was small birds that would be ok.

    Property Manager


    From: Tenant
    Date: Friday 22 May 2009 2.18pm
    To: Property Manager
    Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    Dear Property Manager,

    They are very small ducks.

    Regards, Tenant.


    From: Property Manager
    Date: Friday 22 May 2009 4.06pm
    To: Tenant
    Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    Tenant, under section 4 of the strata residency agreement it states that you cannot have pets. You agreed to these rules when you signed the forms. These rules are set out to benefit everyone in the building including yourself. Do you have a telephone number I can call you on to discuss?

    Property Manager


    From: Tenant
    Date: Friday 22 May 2009 5.02pm
    To: Property Manager
    Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    Dear Property Manager,

    The ducks will no doubt be flying south for the winter soon so it will not be an issue. It is probably for the best as they are not getting along very well with my seventeen cats anyway.

    Regards, Tenant.


    From: Property Manager
    Date: Monday 25 May 2009 9.22am
    To: Tenant
    Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pets in the building

    David, I am just going to write on the forms that we have investigated and you do not have any pets.

    Property Manager
     
  16. skater

    skater Capitalist

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    :eek: That is a TRUE communication??? OMG!!:eek:
     
  17. lifelonglearner

    lifelonglearner Member

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    It sure is, which just makes me even more impressed and amused.
     
  18. Buddybee

    Buddybee Member

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  19. lifelonglearner

    lifelonglearner Member

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