How does Friedlaenders get away with this?

I recently got an email from another unhappy customer of Friedlaenders. The story sounds all to familiar (and one day I will get around to publishing our story, god I am slack). I got the okay from the email author to publish his story:

I’m not to sure if I’m disgusted or glad that it’s not only me that has had trouble with Friedlaenders in the past. It sounds to me as though getting a bond back from this so called agent is similar to that of getting blood from a stone.

I arrived in Australia and was unfortunate enough to lease a property in the Docklands via Friedlaenders. Not realizing the potential headache I was getting myself into I happily signed on the dotted line. BIG mistake

For the first 9 months of the lease there were no problems. I didn’t hear anything from them and figured everything was going along fine. That was until the 10th month when I received a call from another real estate company advising they had been instructed to sell the property so for the remaining 3 months of my every Saturday I’d have to give an open inspection for an hour. Not to happy about finding this out via someone I didn’t know I called Jason of Friedlaenders only to be told he was busy and would call me back…

3 weeks late after numerous calls I was lucky enough to speak to Jason as he had picked up the phone on reception. He said that he knew nothing about the vendor selling and would get back to me. At this point I advised that I would be vacating the property at the end of the lease.

I followed my verbal notice up with a written notice and that was that………or so I thought.

After 3 months of inspections and dressing apartment to help it sell I vacated on the 24th June without so much as a phone call or letter from Friedlaenders.

I called Friedlaenders to say I would be dropping the keys back and was unfortunate enough to speak to Mr. Friedlaender (the bald devil looking guy on their website) who replied telling me that I need to serve notice and I would therefore need to pay another months rent and that an inspection would need to be undertaken (the 1st one within 12 months mind you).

After the inspection I received a letter which had been backdated stating that the property wasn’t left in a good enough standard due to there being weeds in the garden and a beer can one of the bushes (no lie)

I called Friedlaenders for approx 2 months to get my bond refunded. In the end I had to file for a court date at which point I had to contact Jason to make sure he could attend. Low and behold he tells me the land lord was going to refund my bond in full.

I spoke to the other agent that sold the property and they told me that they were extremely happy with the sale and commended me for the cleanliness of the apartment and helping in the sale. Friedlaenders however claim that the vendor was withholding the bond. It took Friedlaenders 3 months from the end of my lease to refund my money.

I hope that people get to read your site prior to taking a lease or buying a property through these guys. They are without a doubt the rudest, most aggressive unprofessional company I’ve ever had the misfortune of dealing with.

So the moral of this story is that you should have everything in writting, keep records and at all cost, avoid Friedlaenders Real Estate!

Molly

 

Its not just us! Good news (well for us)

Ever wonder if a situation is just you? Maybe your looking at a situation the wrong way or your so close to it that you miss that your in the wrong. Well in our dealings with Friedlaenders we never really wondered this but we have since had confirmation that Friedlaenders have stuffed others around.

Charles Friedlaender I have had a few emails for different people, one of which have had extremely similar issues to us (I hope to write something about this soon) and another that was having trouble getting their bond back (although to be honest I am not sure if it was someone connected to Friedlaenders fishing for information)!

And the there was this from 2001!

A Caulfield real estate agent has been fined with 29 breaches over the operation of his business.

Victoria’s Minister for Consumer and Business Affairs, Marsha Thomson said Mr Charles Friedlaender and his company, Charles Friedlaender Real Estate Pty Ltd had been fined over breaches of the Estate Agents Act 1980, the Estate Agents (General Accounts and Audit) Regulations 1997 and the Residential Tenancies Act 1997.

“Consumer and Business Affairs Victoria (CBAV) will not hesitate to pursue estate agents who do not abide by the rules which have been put in place to protect consumers and customers,” Ms Thomson warned.

Some of the charges related to Mr Friedlaender’s failure to conduct security checks before appointing persons as agent’s representatives and his failure to notify authorities of the appointment of those representatives.

REAL ESTATE AGENT IGNORED THE RULES

 

Shame, Shame, Shame!

Its bad enough that they refuse to return peoples calls but to “not keeping full and accurate accounting records of trust bank accounts, of drawing cash cheques against trust accounts and holding a tenant’s bond for several months instead of lodging it with the Residential Tenancy Bonds Authority within five business days” is very very bad for a Real Estate company.

 

If you have had bad dealings you want to add to this diary and warn other potential Victims  Customers of the problems they may have with Friedlaenders. Email me at mollyfud@gmail.com or leave a comment below!

Molly

 

 

A win for the good guys!

I want to thank the Landlord involved in my issue. Every dealing I had with them (they know who they are) has been outstanding. Our VCAT order of payment hadn’t been paid but within a week of informing them directly via a letter (I can’t be sure that they were informed by Friedlaenders in the past about this (surely they would of)) was paid. A cheque arrived yesterday and we will be banking it ASAP. Once

the money has cleared the full story will c

ome out. Don’t forget to subscribe to the RSS feed or via email if you don’t use RSS (or understand what it is) to get the full story and hear the crap that we had to go through to get the money we were rightly owed!

Molly

I love the Smell of Coffee at an Inspection?

I was put on to The Australian Real Estate Blog by someone interested in Real Estate blogs (more about this at a later date (man I say that a lot)) and one of the recent articles makes for very interesting reading, especially to those people in the market for a new house. 

What if a potential purchaser smells fresh paint during an inspection? And what if this leads a purchaser to suspect that something dodgy is going on? Some people may actually investigate further to find out what was repaired, and how well it was repaired. Stockdale & Leggo have a tip that could save embarrassment.

Source: The Australian Real Estate Blog

So the post goes on to show a tip from Stockdale & Leggo that can be used to mask the smell of fresh paint. This is blog looks like a must subscribe by anyone that is in the market for a house!

Oh and don’t forget to read the comments for some of the other ways people have noticed sellers covering up bad smells. Makes you wonder! And what effect will vanilla extract have on the paint in the long run?

Molly

 

Friedlaenders – This is how they treat the people they deal with!

In conversations with Charles Friedlaenders of Friedlaenders Realestate about an issue we have with a property that we rented that they where the agent for, this is a quote of something that Charles (or someone porting to be Charles) said to us about us trying to get back money that we are owed:

“you’ll find out the hard way, again

PS it must have taken you some time to make up & write all that bullshit you petty pathetic little person(s

PPS no more emails anymore or we call the Police (no kidding); we won’t be communicating with you again”

Well just to answer this again:

A) VCAT advised us to let Friedlaenders know that they had 10 days (after they or the land lord they represent didn’t pay us money that VCAT instructed them they owe us)
B) We couldn’t call because they have to our memory NEVER returned a phone call that we have made to them and they asked us not to Phone them either. To use email is the same as a letter (maybe better, more traceable)
C) There is no bullshit on this site (as stated on the second line). All of the info on this site is true information, as far as we are aware. If you (the readers) find any information that is inaccurate, feel free to comment and if you are correct, I will update the information to be correct!

Will keep you informed of further updates and the full story will come out when this is all cleared up.

Molly


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A win at VCAT

Will write more about the results in a month or so but to let you all know, we took the Landlord (represented by Charles Friedlaender of Friedlaenders Real Estate) to VCAT for compensation due to a hot water leak at a flat we rented. We felt they owed us $305 dollars over a couple of bills. Charles expressed that he had been contacted by the Gas company to say that if we proved the Hot Water was leaking but now it was fixed that they would return the money (sounds very strange to me, what if the incident took a year to fix and we were talking about thousands of dollars worth of gas, but Charles sweared it under oath).

The VCAT Member (the guy that heard the case, sort of like a judge) ruled that the first leak was fixed promptly but the second leak took too long to fix and we were awarded $150. This was partly because we couldn’t prove that there was a leak the whole time (from after the first leak) which appears (to us anyway) to be the case.

This was a great result for common sense and probably something that we could have worked out between ourselves and Friedlaenders with they had been more willing to discuss the issue. As it happened, I can’t remember them ever returning our calls the whole time we dealt with them (5 odd years) and definitely no returned calls over this issue or recovering our bond. So a lesson to you all (especially if you run a RealEstate company) its just common courtesy to return phone calls and if your not, just don’t take the message. Tell the person to call back later.

More to come later.

Molly

PS. If you want to comment, you can now leave an Audio Comment. Enjoy!

RealEstate.com.au puts digital toe in the podcast water

Realestate.com.au has open a number of blogs in the past and have been very forward in releasing comments that might be critical of agents which in effect are real estate.com.au’s customers. Now they have released a podcast as a trail and I think this is a wonderful idea and it will be interesting to see how successful it is.

Realestate.com.au podcast

The Podcasts are hosted by Cameron Reilly (Owner of The Podcast Network) who acts as the interviewer and Andrew Pedler who is described to us as “Realestate Expert”. The first show opens up as if we know these guys, which is true of Cam as his life is an open book and he is clearly there as expert Podcaster and a great interviewer.

My problem is with Pedler and there explanation of him. As mentioned above, he is sold to us as a Realestate expert but we don’t know why. It isn’t explained to us what his qualifications are. It isn’t explained to us where he has come from. It isn’t explained to me where he works, where I can find out more about him. None of these things are touched on in the Podcasts or on the site.

Also there isn’t any where on the main site for the listener to add comments or ask question of this “Realestate Expert”. It would be great if they asked for questions and answered them either on the site or on the show.

In general the content of the shows is pretty good. It does sound a bit robotic. It sounds like it could do with a bit freeing up of the reigns and something like a few listener questions could be just the thing to do that.

In summary, it definitely is great that they have gone down this track and I look forward to listening to the next group of episodes (oh, thats another thing, these just appeared out of no where, which is fair enough for a test but will future Podcasts appear on a regular basis?) and see if Simon Baker (CEO of real estate.com.au) takes some of these suggests on-board.

Molly


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Things are a Foot!

Well in our dispute with Friedlaenders, things are moving along and a
big milestone has been reached. I am not going to say more now but will
once things are over and done with, a lot more on this situation will be published here.

Any comments or stories or tips and tricks, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Molly

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Welcome to the Blog. This is your voice on Friedlaenders and Real Estate in general

Hi Guys,

We are setting up this blog to comment on the poor treatment we received from Friedlaenders Real Estate (of Elwood, Victoria, Australia) when trying to recover our bond and trying to get them to meet there responsibilities in a matter over a Hot water leak that cost us extra money on our gas bill.

The performance on the matter has been (in my opinion) poor to say it nicely. You will hear some classic cases of just treating your customer like crap and just not understanding customer service.

Any way, more to come later. Sign up for the RSS feed if you want to get updated on the details of this case and of others people report to me.

Molly

PS. If you have a story you want to tell of FriedLaenders or any other Real Estate agent, let me know and I will publish it (if appropriate). For that matter, if you have a good story, let me know that as well.


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