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You want to do what!?

Recently Johnny, our tenant in a cottage on the East Rand sent through a lengthy email recently demanding all kinds of renovations and tidy up work be completed, 12 items to be exact. One of the items read:

  • Cutting down the oak tree alternatively the tree can be poisoned.

Wait, what!?!? Let me get my head around that. A tenant, who rents one of our properties, wants to CUT DOWN AN OAK TREE that has been happily generating much needed oxygen in the magnificent garden for over 40 years?

A temporary tenant wants to destroy a glorious, permanent tree? The tree is in the far corner of the garden, no chance of it falling on any of the buildings should it be struck by lightening and decide to collapse. No chance of its leaves clogging up gutters. Nope. The tree just grows quietly in the garden, home to endless birds and insects. I have NO words. But it did get me thinking…do we need to add clauses to rental agreements to say poisoning of trees is strictly prohibited? Do we need to vet tenants to see if they secretly want to live in a concrete jungle with not a shred of shrubbery around and plan to systematically remove anything green from their line of sight? Clearly, this is a sensitive topic for me. Clearly it makes me pretty FURIOUS pretty QUICKLY. Which is why all property investors need lovely, sensible managing agents as a buffer between the owners and the tenants. Instead of me having to dust off my long forgotten karate skills and in one swift move, flick Johnny onto his back and remind him the property is not his to destroy, our calm managing agent Michelle made it very clear that the oak tree is untouchable, end of discussion. Apparently I still have some residual anger to work through...but as for Johnny, rumor has it that he is happily planning his next ridiculous request. Something about relocating the driveway half a meter to the left? ….MICHELLE!!!

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