Marihanti Estates CC,
is an Estate agency, with its primary focus on the rental of residential properties.
The company is 100% owned by Ms. MJ Herselman and provide services to the rental and selling of property market.
The company was founded in 2001 and provided services for the rental of property. It expanded to cater for the selling of property since 2004.
MariHanti Estates is one of the three biggest rental agencies in Witbank. We are the longest continuous running non Franchise rental agency in Witbank.
Currently we are letting over 200 private residential properties. We have 27 properties currently available for rental. This number can be increased significantly as developers are looking for long term rental agreements because of the economic recess and the strict credit criteria for loans instituted by banks. We are in close contact with a number of developers and a good working relationship exists.
MariHanti Estates are able to supply:
- Uncompromising level of quality service.
- Trained resources to listen to the client’s needs.
- Good business ethics and corporate governance.
- The ability to build long term business relationships with clients and investors.
The agent, while working in the landlord’s interest to get the maximum return from the property, should also assist in keeping the property properly maintained and the investment safe, he said.
Landlords should ask if the prospective agent has a Fidelity Fund Certificate, which is stipulated by South African law, to be able to work legally as an agent. Many who buy and sell homes would consider asking their agent if they have this certificate but it sometimes gets “missed” when choosing a rental agent. This is important as it protects the landlord in a case of negligence or fraud – the landlord then has recourse to claim any damages from the Fidelity Fund.
There are two types of mandates for rental agents, said Bauer, introduction or management contracts. In many cases the landlord would opt just for the introduction which includes a lease being signed with the tenant and the landlord is then left to collect the rental every month, manage the property and check on his tenant from time to time. The better option is a management contract, where the rental agent will collect the monthly rent, make the relevant payments on behalf of the landlord (such as rates and water) and arrange maintenance if it is needed. Some agents will also conduct an inspection of the property from time to time.
“The landlord and rental agent must agree beforehand which the best option is and what the landlord expects of the agent,” said Bauer.
Deposits and checks
It is sometimes asked who should hold the deposit put down by the tenant, and the answer is that either the landlord or the agent can hold the deposit, provided it is kept in an interest-bearing account and that the balance is kept track of, said Bauer. If the owner keeps the deposit the temptation is always there to use it in the meantime, which creates a problem for him when the time comes to refund the deposit. Likewise, when the agent holds the deposit, the landlord should check whether this money goes into an account which is monitored closely, he said.
Credit checks before signing a lease are very important as this gives the landlord an idea of whether the prospective tenant pays his accounts well and is a steady income earner, said Bauer. “This service must be offered by the rental agent as you need to have peace of mind that the rent will be paid on time every month.”