MANAGING AGENT REQUESTS FOR ROUTINE INSPECTIONS AND ACCESS

MANAGING AGENT REQUESTS FOR ROUTINE INSPECTIONS AND ACCESS

BACKGROUND

We lease all apartments, generally this is either through a licensed agent or, a landlord directly. We lease these under the Residential Tenancy Act (RTA) which, suits both the agents and ourselves as this is an act we all know and understand and there are easy escalation points for both parties should issues arise. The RTA gives agents authority to do certain tasks and also empowers us as tenants in certain circumstances.

The managing agent relationship with us is critical, we want one that respects their needs and understands the urgency of some of our requests. What we don’t want, is a difficult relationship where minor issues have to be sorted out in VCAT. This suits neither party and wastes far too much times and energy. 


In general, agents are the life blood of new apartments coming into our group and, with a positive relationship, we generally get offered additional apartments as generally, most tenants are hopeless, and agents and landlords recognise the great job our team do in maintaining the landlord’s assets.


Developing working relationships with agents is critical to the operation of our business, its therefore essential our concierge hosts work to develop a great relationship.



AGENTS ARE USED TO DEALING WITH HORRIBLE TENANTS - WORK WITH THEM AS AN HELPFUL TENANT IN SOME CASES WILL BE REFRESHING!

ROUTINE INSPECTIONS

Routine inspection requests should be being received in our Zoho Desk when agents send them to landords@apartmentsofmelbourn.com.au, this email automatically assigns a support ticket and this gets assigned to the onsite host.  



NOTE: If you are still receiving these by mail, please raise a support ticket for corporate services to follow up with the agent as changes were introduced in 2018 to allow for the electronic delivery of such notices and we need to follow up with the agent.


Once received, review the ticket, all we ask (and this can be refused by the agent), is the inspection happens between 11am and 3pm. We prefer after 12pm so our cleaning team get access, the reason for this is so the pictures taken are of a clean apartment as these are on the report sent to landlords. So, we all want the best-looking apartment as it keeps landlords on side


When received:

  1. The support ticket gets assigned to the relevant property’s concierge host
  2. Go back and confirm by replying to the ticket, using the template ‘agent routine inspection confirmation'
  3. Set the due date on the ticket
  4. Put the date and apartment number in the subject line so its easily seen
  5. Move bookings around so, this apartment is an ARRIVAL on this date

IMPORTANT: Check if this apartment currently has an open support ticket for smoke alarm testing, if so, please ask the agent to do this while they are onsite. Our advice from MFB states the landlord is responsible to ensure these work however, we must notify the landlord if we KNOW its not working. Its pretty poor legislation and best practice is for third party testing however, at this stage it can’t be enforced. So, one way or another, we want to get these tested.


The day before arrival:

  1. Host needs to check each ticket, and, checks to see if the apartment will be vacant the following day:
  2. If yes, nothing further needs to be done but, send an update to the agent to say you look forward to seeing them tomorrow, and to come to…
  3. If no, please call the customer staying if they have already arrived (if not, mention on arrival). Explain that we have an essential health and safety inspection scheduled for the following day and advise what times this is between. Also advise, this will occur and be supervised by a team member and, the customer does not need to be present. Afterwards, send this message to the customer by email from within the ticket (using template: Safety Inspection)
  4. Raise a support ticket and assign to cleaning services to have the apartment prepared as a priority arrival


On the day:

  1. Check your tickets, ensure our phone concierge team do not send a CLEAN ALERT to customers as we don’t want them arriving before the agent
  2. Have the keys at your desk for the agent to grab, they are always busy and, in a hurry
  3. When the keys are returned, ask is there anything we should follow up on
  4. Once everything is done, please close all open support tickets 


Agent routine inspection confirmation

Dear X

Great news, I will be your point of contact for this inspection. Please come) to collect keys and to say hello!
(Note: Delete addresses as needed)
Shop 4/565 Flinders Street Melbourne (Orange flags outside the entrance)
Shop 8/568 Collins Street Melbourne (rear of foyer, orange flag outside the entrance)
89 A’Beckett Street Melbourne (Lobby, right hand side of reception desk) (insert address
I have checked our system and can see we have the following issues outstanding:
INSERT ANY OPEN SUPPORT TICKETS
While you are onsite, can you please provide an update on these issues. If you need to change this date and time, please reply to this message. If you need to speak with me call 1300 88 99 30, option X (insert site extension number), we are available each day from 11am until 7pm.
 

Safety Inspection Reminder

Dear X,

Making sure we meet and exceed all state and federal laws is important to us and, should be important to you. We have a mandatory Health and Safety Inspection scheduled for tomorrow between INSERT TIMES) for your apartment. 

The agent conducting the inspection will be supervised by one of our team and, is well known to us. You do not need to be present as we will be using our spare keys to gain access. The entire process takes about 10 minutes and, is part of our ongoing quality control process. As we mentioned, we are required to provide access for these inspections under state legislation and they are a routine process.

We thank you for your understanding and trust you are having an amazing time in Melbourne, it’s the best city in the world afterall!


FAQ

Can I refuse an agent request to inspect an apartment?

No, why would you want too? The more often we can get apartments inspected, the more issue get dealt with. But NO, you cannot simply refuse. You can however use your powers of persuasion and charm to work with the agent for a change… at the end of the day, we must facilitate these inspections

My customer has extended. what should I do?

Alert the customer to a mandatory inspection as per the above process

Who can take the agent to an occupied apartment?

Either the host or the cleaning supervisor, if you are stuck and have a maintenance person who works for us on site, this will also be ok

The agent wants to inspect before 11am?

Ask the agent to change the time, it’s their choice but most will. Otherwise place the room offline for the night before and ask the cleaning supervisor to give keys to agent when they arrive. Note: If room is occupied, the cleaning supervisor will need to wait while the inspection is completed

The customer has refused access, what should I do?
This is a breach of our terms of stay, a contract they signed on arrival and, forms the overall agreement between us and them. Immediately contact the Group Operations Manager or Neil who will enforce this requirement. 
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