Tenants from HELL

From: Debbie .

Just seeking some advice on a sticky situation.

There is a property that I am very interested in. It is a 3 bed house with a flat under. At present it has dreadful tenants.

The problem is this. We arranged with the Estate Agent to view the property and were told to meet Agent on site. When we arrived the tenants came out to the car where we were waiting, on the road outside property, and demanded to know what we were doing. My husband replied "We are just waiting for the Agent." The tenant muttered something under his breath, stormed inside and locked the door.

When Agent arrived he said that the tenants appear to be a bit of a problem as he has notified them the property is for sale and they don't appear to be co-operating. They told him that they did not know anything about it.

Today I rang the Agent again to see if I could view the property and he said he has tried ringing the tenant and they are not answering their phone, he tried to call them today at their place of work, when he spoke to the tenant he told the Agent that they did not live there anymore, then changed later in the conversation to "I don't know what you are talking about, you have a wrong number.

My husband has suggested making an offer 20% below asking price, sight unseen with the stipulation that if accepted we have the following put into the contract.

1) Vacant possession

2) Owner to give copy of last inspection and that the property be in the same condition on us becoming the owners (just in case the tenant decides to trash it).

The pricing is very good already, at about 15% below market value and the rent can be increased by about $50.00 per week minimum after these tenants are removed.

According to the Agent it is in good repair, only needing painting. The outside is neat and tidy also.

Are there any other things that I should have put in contract. Also, how do I go about getting a building inspection if tenants won't allow anyone into property.


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Reply: 1
From: Jakk Bass - The SLUM LORD

Hi ya Debbie,

Now this is the type of situation that I love.
Assuming that these tenants have always been as friendly and co operative as they are now, the present owner is obviously motivated to sell. Tis a great time to go for the jugular and submit a real low offer.
Definitely state "Vacant Possession" as you will only be creating a problem for yourself to take on existing tenant (or so it seems).
Many times when I have done this sort of deal, I don't put too many conditions on the contract because I usually offer so low that it wouldn't matter if the property was half trashed when I settle it, I'd still be miles in front.
It will be interesting to see just how motivated the seller is.


"Chance is the pseudonym God uses when He does not want to sign His name".
- Anatole France
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Reply: 2
From: Carly Henderson

Dear Debbie
What a sticky situation indeed?
Im reading between the lines here, only because I have had a situation like this before, have you considered that perhaps the tenants didn't know that the property was going on the market for sale?
That was what happened to me, it turned out that the Agent didn't explain to the tenants what he was doing and that the property was in fact on the market, The owner had instructed the Agent to keep it quiet, and what happens hostile tenants who are really scared angry and helpless because nothing has been explained to the, it would be like putting your home on the market and never hearing anything again, whilst people walk willy nilly about your home, you'd be hostile too.
The other reason I pose this scenario is because, why would the agent who is selling it and i presume the managing agent for the property be fooled into thinking they had moved out? surly they aren't staying there for free, so they must be paying rent to the current owner, and where is the current owner in all of this?
now im not saying the tenants are right they are most defiantly wrong however in answer to your questions
A- Have you been inside at all?
if not do this before you make any offer to buy it certainly don't take the representations of an agent as gospel, maybe there is a reason why he doesn't want you to go inside?
B- Are the Tenants still bound by a lease?
If they are you will find it tough getting vacant posetion as you are buying it acknowledging that that lease is in place, than when it expires you can serve a notice to vacate
C- Copy of the inspection report should be in the contract or if not the managing agent is REQUIED BY LAW TO HAVE A COPY AT ALL TIMES
so ask for it and take it with you when you inspect.
D- The owner is responsible for keeping the property up to standards, unless the tenant TRASHES it. If the later is the case then the tenant is required to pay for it and that is usually out of their bond. All Tenants are bound by this when they sign a lease.
If the property is so bad and you have made requests for things to be fixed by the time you settle and the vendor agrees to do them and they arent done by the day you settle DO NOT SETTLE.
Again i find it hard to belive that hey just wont let anyone in as long as the tenant has reasonable notice (usually 48hrs) they are required to let people in.
i hope this answers your questions Dont do anything until you know the Full Story.
Hope eveything goes for the best! Brian
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Reply: 2.1
From: Lan Diep

Hi all
Just thought I'd share this special story about tenants..

Reading this story reminded me of my parents first IP.

My parents had just brought their first IP last year. One day my parents went to the house to measure the backyard for a new fence. My dad noticed that there were a lot of cars parked in the front of the house, and assuming that the tenants were having a party my father did not bother them. They went to the backyard to start measuring. Suddenly my parents were surrounded by 10 undercover police men with guns pointing at them. My mother later recalled my dad was so scared he couldn't even find his voice to answer the policemen's questions. The policemen asked my parents what they were there and how did they know the occupiers of the house.

Apparently, the tenants were dealing and using drugs and were under arrest. The police totally destroyed the house looking for the drugs - tool bricks apart, ripped the carpet to expose the floorboards, cut the floorboard etc where you'd think they'd hide the cash and the drugs the police ripped apart!

The tenants stayed in our property, even when we asked the property manager to ask them to leave. They would not. They stayed in our property up until their court appearance and one month after they stopped paying for the rent.

Hope you all enjoyed this story :)
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