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How to approach Property Manager

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Posts: 56
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Topic starter
(@bdgfn)
Member
Joined: 2 years ago

We have been here now for a little under a month (in Tavira, in the Algarve), and we truly are loving it. But, as with anything else, it's not all perfect. So, long story short, in order to secure a 12-month rental agreement on a property that we liked (online), we signed a contract last November and started paying rent in January. We were assured that everything was in order, or would be in order, by January. Several things needed to be done, such as purchase of new items such as a refrigerator, dishwasher and clothes washer. We were assured that those items were in place. The owner, who had just purchased the property, had replaced the wooden floors. I thought it was due to damage from the previous tenants/owner, but apparently it was due to water from above.

 

Fast forward to mid-March. We arrived on a Friday afternoon. Our first stop was the real estate office to pick up the keys. When we arrived at the apartment, we noticed a number of things, such as the three new kitchen furnishings were not connected to anything. The oven was completely dirty, as were all the floors. We had a meeting there the next day with the Property Manager. She was unhappy with the way things were. Including the fact that the gas was not yet connected, meaning no hot water. She had assumed the person who was handling that had done so before she went on holiday.

 

We had planned on staying in an AirBnB for a week while our household goods/furniture was delivered. My daughter and son-in-law flew in from the US to help us get the place set up, and their help was invaluable. We had planned on moving out of the AirBnB and into the apartment the day they left to fly back to the US, but without gas and hot water, we considered the apartment unready for habitation. As it turned out, we had to stay in two different AirBnBs for another two weeks while the gas situation was resolved, a new kitchen faucet was installed, four inside doors were removed and replaced due to the previously mentioned water leak from the above unit. That means we had been paying rent for 3 months for a place that was not ready to move in, and an extra two weeks we had not planned on.

 

Our question is this, how do we approach the Property Manager about recompense for this? We feel that we should be owed the rent for January through March as the unit was not in the condition stated. At the very least, we feel we should be reimbursed for the extra two weeks of AirBnB. So, how should we go about approaching the Property Manager? This issue is not the owner's fault. He had hired the Property Manager to handle it for him, and it was not. So I understand anything that comes will come from her, the Property Manager. We do not want to create a combative environment with the Property Manager. In fact, we do like her. And we do understand the slower pace of things and lesser sense of urgency, but we do feel we should be owed something.

 

I look forward to any and all inputs. Thanks.

1 Reply
Posts: 191
Community Member
(@sonia)
Member
Joined: 1 year ago

I recommend you talk to a lawyer about this, you can explain the situation to him and he can write a letter in your behalf to the property management listing the problems and you proposal of reimbursing.

I say this because if you only talk to them they may say they will sort it out but in the end they do nothing hoping that you will be tired of waiting and give up, unfortunately that happens sometimes, especially if people are not assertive about the issue and keep at them.

If you have your complaint and request of compensation in writing and they do nothing you can ultimately take it to court or to a small claims office in order for them to analyze the issue and ultimately order compensation.

My suggestion of contacting a lawyer is mainly because he will be able to navigate the issue much quicker but you can do it yourself, keeping copies of all communications and just to be on the safe side keep photos of the problem issues in case they are needed down the line.

Seeing as you are in Tavira if you need a lawyer there and don’t have one already I can give you some contacts if you think you will need them.

Best of luck and sorry that your new life in Portugal started that way.

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