Rogue property manager?

Gregory asks:
(updated on Monday, March 16th 2015)

I have a rogue property manager in Christchurch who has refused to on-pay rent and subsequently his contract has been terminated in writing. Despite having signed contracts with another agency, he refused to cease contact with the tenants, tells them to ignore the new contracts as they are 'fake' and keeps collecting the rent. I am out of the country so am having difficulty securing my income and have significant mortgage debts plus rates to pay. What do you advise to remedy this situation urgently? Thanks.

Our Experts Answer:

Your contract with your existing property manager should define how much notice you need to give in order to terminate the management. Most management agreements will require a minimum term, and then on expiry of the initial term, usually one month’s notice from either party. I suggest you check your agreement to ensure that you are giving your property manager the required notice. Then, if all is in order, ask your new property manager to visit your tenants and inform them about the change of property manager (and other housekeeping, such as a new bank account to pay their rents into). You may like to give the new manager written authority to show the tenants that he now represents you. Once the tenants are convinced, their rents should start arriving into the new manager’s designated bank account. Ask the new manager also to request all tenancy documentation and keys from the previous manager. If the outgoing property manager refuses to cooperate, then you may ask your representative (or new property manager, on your behalf) to make an application to the Disputes Tribunal.

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