The Queensland Estate Agency listed a number of freebies tenants could purchase for their landlords. Photo / 123rf
A Queensland estate agent has faced backlash after emailing tenants with a list of gifts they could give their landlord, one costing up to $ 115.
The email from Kanik & Co, a real estate agency that describes itself as a boutique and independent agency that opened in 2017, features a list of basket options that tenants can choose from.
These included a pasture box of white wine or a box of party candy for $ 55, a personal care basket for $ 70, or a $ 99 expense for a foodie basket.
The big ticket option, however, is a deluxe gift basket called All Things Golden for $ 115, which contains such items as sparkling wine, satin dress and eye mask, aroma diffuser. , bath salts and a variety of foods and sweets.
“This has been a particularly difficult year for our tenants and landlords alike, and we understand that some tenants want to thank their landlord for everything in 2021,” the agency wrote in the email.
“The choice to participate is 100% optional and you certainly don’t have to.
“Our team is happy to facilitate the purchase of a gift on your behalf and have it delivered to the owner with a handwritten note to say thank you, direct from you.”
The email specifies that an invoice will be sent to the tenant and that payment must be made within seven days.
But the offer was criticized when it was shared online. Twitter user Sinead Canning revealed a screenshot of the email on social media.
“Homeowners have seen their passive income grow at your expense this year. Now is the time to lick their boots harder,” she said in response to the email.
“This agency is located in Logan, where the average weekly rent has increased by 30% over the past five years and the vacancy rate is 1%.
Some called the email “outrageous”, “joke” and “obscene”, while others were “stunned” by the request, adding that their “gift” was to pay the mortgage. of the owner.
“Once I stopped laughing at the indignity of it, I felt sick,” one woman wrote.
“Thank you for letting me pay too much rent for an insanitary house that I’m too afraid to complain about or ask for repairs because finding a rental property is like the Hunger Games and it’s better than of having to spend a fortune to move, ”added another.
“Thank them for what?” Keep the younger generations excluded from the housing market? A man tweeted.
“In this time of record interest rates, homeowners are making more than ever,” one person joked.
Even some owners agreed that email was not the right thing to do.
“As a landlord who lowered rent and improved the property’s internet connection during the Covid lockdown, do I say WTF? One person wrote.
“As another who did the same (started a three month rent free period then cut the rent in the future on the next lease), I just can’t figure out the collection of gifts from this agent. If I were the LL, I would take my property elsewhere for management, “another replied to the tweet.
“I’ve never seen anything more ridiculous in my life (and I’ve owned it),” one woman tweeted.
According to realesate.com.au, homes in Logan Central rent an average of $ 350 per week with an annual rental yield of 5.1% and units rent for $ 260 per week with a rental yield of 7.7%.
A report from the Town of Logan released in 2020 found that housing affordability was a growing concern for households in Logan and that many families were experiencing housing stress compared to the rest of South East Queensland.
Rental prices at Logan rose 4.1% from March 2020 to March 2021, according to another report from Deloitte and the Queensland government.
Kanik & Co manager Michael Kanik apologized for any breaches and said a similar email was sent to landlords with an offer to give their tenant a Christmas present.
“Each tenant and owner is unique, and some of them wanted to thank their owners and wanted us to help us make it easier,” he told The Guardian.
“We can see where some of the criticism is coming from – the rent is obviously going up across the board – but not all landlords are the same, some don’t want to raise the prices.
“We had tenants or landlords who wanted to exchange Christmas gifts and cards, and we wanted us to do that. We just wanted to do a good thing, that’s all.”