Good tradespeople are worth their weight in gold, but sometimes they can let you down.

Guest post – Inspired Growth Training

Inspired Growth Training ran a post on its Facebook page asking for property managers main complaints when dealing with tradespeople, and gathered some great responses. Enjoy, have a giggle – you may be able to relate to some of them!

Dumbed-down explanations
“Tradies dumbing down explanations, assuming I know nothing and trying to justify their overcharging. I do love playing with them though, because not only am I a PM, I have a Cert 4 in building and asbestos training and I’m married to a builder. I kinda know what I’m talking about…”
~Vicky Sorbello

Loose lips sink ships!
“A tradie with ‘loose lips,’ i.e. one who dramatises an explanation of the maintenance issue to a tenant, who in turn panics and starts threatening legal action because ‘it’s dangerous and unsafe,’ when it’s not because it has just been fixed. Drainer!”
~Aileen Paton

Lame attempt for access
“Tradies who make only one attempt to contact a tenant for access and then never follow up to complete the job and don’t tell me the job was never done. Grrrr.”
~Lorretta Dale

The carpet king
“I have to laugh when I remember one carpet cleaner I used at my old work. Absolutely brilliant and was a master at stain removal. Quick to attend and great on price. But seriously, he used to come in after doing to a job and tell you all about the carpet he’d just cleaned. He’d tell you it was lovely quality carpet, that it was a low pile wool blend and was much like the carpet in another house he’d been in a couple of weeks back but this is a slightly lighter colour. He would tell you what bloody company sold that carpet and other fun facts. In short, he loved carpet so much. So, SO much! He could literally talk about carpet all day and there never seemed to be a polite way to say ‘I don’t give a @%#£ about the carpet, I just need to know it’s clean!’
~Rebecca Rowe

Swearing black and blue keys
“Swearing black and blue keys have been returned and then six months later bring said keys into the office.”
~Krystle McGuiness

I’m at the pub!
“I guess there’s no need to picture this, but I love the call at 4:30 PM on Friday from a tenant who says their hot water system is leaking has been for three days. You call the plumber, but they’re already at the pub and cannot do it until Monday (even though their website states they work from 8 AM to 5 PM). On Monday they call to say ‘The hot water service is installed, can you pay me today? My cash flow is a little low’. “Um, no I’m at the pub,’ I reply.”
~Veronica Guilfoyle

Living with no keys!
“Lying about a job – I recently requested a tradie I had not used before to inspect and repair a chipped stone bench top in a vacant property for which I held the keys in our office on the ground floor of the building containing the unit. After waiting all day for someone to attend and collect the keys, I received an email stating that they had inspected the job and could not repair it…? I am still awaiting an explanation. Another company happily completed the job!”
~Sam Berryman

Doing other work without a work order
“When you have sent a work order job-specific and they do the job but take it upon themselves to find other work that I didn’t ask them to look at, so the owner thinks we are in cahoots with each other drumming up work!”
~Linda Gulabovska

Not flushing!
“Using the toilet at the property and not flushing it.”
~Ellen Shaw

Show me the money!
“Knowing we only run disbursements twice a month, but wanting to be paid after 7 days.”
~Kate Moffatt

Breaking stuff
“Breaking something and not holding themselves accountable for it. It’s as bad as hearing ‘It was like that when I moved in’ from a tenant!”
~Tahlia Holl

I was just passing by!
“Turning up unannounced – ‘I was just passing by so I called in!'”
~Tegan Capp

Hiking up the rates
“When tradies become too comfortable with the volume of work they get and start charging a ridiculous amount of money!”
~Sue Theil

No show
“Not showing up at the property at the agreed time, or even calling to say they are running late!”
~Danielle Coady

Spoon feeding a solution
“A tradie who can’t problem solve and find a solution, until you suggest it to them!”
~Aileen Paton

Just communicate… please!
“My pet peeve is when you send a work order and they don’t call the tenant for ages. I don’t care when you do the job, but call the tenant within 24 hours to show I have sent the work order!”
~Tisa van den Heuvel

A quote doesn’t mean ‘do the work!’
“Doing a job when the work order says at least four times to quote only and then wanting to be paid.”
~Jess Macdonald

Get some balls!
“When they don’t have the guts to just say ‘I don’t want this job’ and instead they make excuses like the tenant won’t answer, or don’t return your calls or quote a ridiculously high figure. Grow a set and just tell us you don’t want the job!”
~Melly Linda

Cooking lunch at the property
“Cooking their lunch in the oven because the property has power connected and using the facilities as the property is vacant and not cleaning up after themselves. I then had to get a cleaner through before the tenants moved in the next day.”
~Krystle McGuiness

The tenant now wants free rent!
“When the tradie starts talking to the tenant about the problem and explaining that’s been very bad and they should ask for a reduction in their rent as they may take days to fix. Within five minutes of tradie leaving, you guessed it, tenant, on the phone asking for a free week.”
~Skye Bartlett

But it’s tax deductible!
“When I tell them their quote is too high and they say ‘Relax, it’s tax deductible anyway.'”
~Engage Property

“Overquoting, because they don’t want the job. Makes me look like an idiot because I take their word for it!”
~Engage Property

Mates rates
“When you ask them to do a personal job for you and you’re still waiting! LOL”
~John Gilmovich