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Diary of a Work Experience Student ( Part 2)

As promised, here is the second part of the blog from our very own Leila! 

Leila decided to do her compulsory work experience placement with us from 2-6 December 2019.  

It was refreshing to have her temporarily join our team and, even more welcoming was to hear her thoughts and opinions of the daily tasks which have now become second nature to us. 

Leila was kind enough to share her daily journal of her experience with us and, we are delighted to share this with you all. 

Day 3: Wednesday 4 December 2019

It seems that it’s that point in the week when I start band-aiding my toes because of the blisters, which are of course due to my work heels!

Again, we began the day in Mariam’s apartment, consolidating knowledge, queries and terms that had surfaced the day before, thus actually putting sense to the “experience” part of work experience. 

We headed to the city soon after, briefly casting our eyes over a short stay property that is managed by one of the SSRE partners. We speedily checked that everything was in order, and updated the inventory just to be sure. Apparently, in real estate, you can never be sure enough. 

What started as my first vacate inspection became much more.  Mariam and I entered, and were immediately confronted with the placement of the furniture. Everything was positioned haphazardly and randomly around the room (it was a furnished studio apartment), and it honestly looked awful. It became more concerning when we realised that there was a film of grime, not just on the furniture, but on most surfaces. The carpet, the kitchen bench, shelves and drawers, the bathroom tiles, the shower, the window sill.

I won’t bore you with the details, but here I am wearing a silk blouse and creamy Ralph Lauren pants, moving around heavy furniture and cleaning an apartment that was supposed to already be clean. Although I was only on my third day of the experience, I was sure that is not the job of a real estate agent to do.

The vacated Tenant was working very close by so came to the property while Mariam and I were still there. They agreed that it was necessary for them to pay professional cleaners to finish cleaning the property so that the condition would more fairly reflect the condition they received the property in. 

Once the property was more organised, I reviewed the itemised property condition report, noting the new condition of each item compared to the original “ingoing” condition. Mariam helped me to identify what was “reasonable wear” and what was damage.

More than two hours and a lot of sweating later, Mariam and I returned to the car-park. By then the parking fee was $48.00. Mariam was actually relieved though. This is because city parking can cost much more and she had anticipated having to pay closer to $80.00.  

We returned to the office for the rest of the day, documenting the inspection and our findings, and uploading the photos taken to the office files to finalise the vacate condition report. One pro of our visit was that we got some nice photos to use as marketing images for the property; they were taken after we’d given the place a once-over, of course.

Like all days, they don’t actually end until, well, the day ends. So of course my shoe broke on the way home. You know, the ankle strap that was keeping the shoe on my foot. Then I dropped my phone. Yeah, let’s just say it wasn’t my best moment.

So today, I got to experience a lot.

 Day 4: Thursday 5 December 2019

This morning was the first real morning that I didn’t have an outfit planned, and I found myself caught very off-guard. I realised I didn’t have anything to wear so I ran to my mum’s room. We ended up finding me a gorgeous outfit, out of some pants Mum had forgotten she owned and one of her favourite, summery blouses. I felt awfully prepared this morning, as I had a lot of time to kill before heading to Mariam’s. Ha, I’m getting good at this.

As always, we began in the apartment doing basic tasks, but this morning instead of heading to any inspections or on field trips, we went straight to the office to finalise the reports from all of the routine inspections we had conducted throughout the week. The morning flew by quickly as we did this, and discussed various aspects of real estate that Mariam, Noune and Argine felt I would benefit from knowing.

Later in the day, Mariam and I departed for an OC (Owners Corporation) meeting for one of the committees she is on. Yes, there are multiple; she likes to contribute to the positive state and wellness of buildings that she is involved with, which I find admirable. We weren’t sure if I would be able to sit in, but the committee generously allowed me to! I tuned in to the issues they were discussing, and their interview of a potential new contractor. Honestly, some of it was interesting. I picked up on some new jargon such as “illegal subletting”, “overcrowding”, “Essential Services” … My ears pricked up when I heard “foyer refurbishment” and “finishes samples”, and it was certainly intriguing to see how a group of professional adults navigate their differences and come to compromises and conclusions. Even though the couch that I was sitting on was pretty comfy, sitting for two hours in a little room in the corner of a carpark wasn’t exactly exciting.

Anyhow, the meeting wrapped up and Mariam took me to briefly view an apartment being “refurbished” for lease by SSRE in the building. I loved it! The view was stunning, and honestly, I could see myself living somewhere like that someday. It was a great way to end another educational day.

Dat 5: Friday 6 December 2019

Wow, today is my last day of work experience at Silver Service Real Estate. I’ve come to the conclusion of my brief venture into the real estate industry. It’s been a ride and I have mixed feelings about it being over.

This morning, we headed straight out into the inner-west to conduct two inspections – a Routine Inspection, and a Vacate/Bond Inspection.

We entered the first apartment and began to look around. Mariam realised fairly quickly that something wasn’t quite right. There was pet food & water bowls about. The immediate problem was that the lease agreement didn’t include the tenant keeping a pet. There were other problems though. The property had cleaning issues, some obviously due to the dog that was living there. We wrapped up that inspection but, suffice to say, the management of the findings had yet to begin.

Next, we headed to the nearby vacate. This time around, Mariam gave me the checklist to do it all by myself! She thoroughly checked the property as well to make sure I wasn’t missing anything but, I don’t think I did (she didn’t miss anything – Mariam).

After this, we went to a really nice local pub to grab some lunch. That is one benefit of working on the road. You also get to learn about the different suburbs of Melbourne and why people like to live there.

After sharing a delicious plate of nachos at Hardimans in Kensington, we headed back to the office and spent the rest of the day there, writing up the inspection reports and tying up the loose ends from over the course of the week.

I feel like I have a pretty good handle on things by now, and I’m happy to say it’s been a successful toe-dip into real estate.

Day 6: Saturday 7 December 2019

Now that I have completed my brief stint in real estate, I see that I’ve gained an impressive amount of knowledge in a short time. I don’t know exactly how other real estate businesses function, but I can tell you exactly what I’ve learned from my experience with this one. A large part of what I’ve learned is that Silver Service Real Estate functions in their own, unique way that ensures they are serving every client. I saw that the relationships between agent, landlord and tenant were valued and treated with respect by SSRE, and I saw genuine care and devotion put into every task required.. 

Every aspect of real estate is dealing with people. Whether it’s a client, a contractor or an owner’s corporation, it’s people. It takes an awful lot of time, patience and social skills from what I’ve seen. The job is a massive commitment. I mean, many are, but this one requires time spent out of work. Out of the regular 9-5 workday pattern. The job is unpredictable. A new day brings new tasks, new difficulties, new clients. Real estate calls forth the skills of negotiation and cooperation with many different characters. Agents at SSRE ensure they work with their clients and find a compromise rather than simply pleasing one party.

I’ve learnt about owner’s corporations, or ‘OCs’ as agents say, close up. How challenging it is to work in a group tasked to solve problems that affect how people live! In that, I’ve seen different personalities work together and challenge each other.

Everything I’ve learnt in this past week, I know will be invaluable to my life and how I will now experience the world of real estate and interact with agents. Through the real estate industry, we have places to call home. We task these people with the responsibility of putting a roof over our heads. Giving us shelter. They hold our livelihoods in their hands. And if you ask me, Silver Service Real Estate does an awesome job honouring that. It’s been a hell of a ride, and I’m so lucky to have had this experience. I’m also honoured you were able to share it with me through this blog.  

What a delightful read, Thank you Leila for your wonderful insights. It was a pleasure having you as a temporary member of our Team!

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Short Stay and AirBnB property Myths

Melbourne is one of the highest subscribers of AirBnb properties, attracting a lot of property investors to turn to short stays for higher rental yields.

Of course when attracting more business, the responsibility is increased, and if managed well it can prove to be beneficial to not only to the investor but the community as whole.

Silver Service Real Estate has been in this business for more than 50 years and we pride ourselves for providing the best service to our clients which also resonates with our principles and benefits the community at large.

In this article we we talk about a few myths about short stays and AirBnB properties and answer some frequently asked questions.

Myth 1 – Short Stays are illegal:

Short stay is legal, offering a property for a minimum 1-night stay is not illegal, though we at Silver Service do not recommend that a property be offered for less than 4 or 5 night stay (our minimum terms are 7 nights but we will offer a minimum of 4 or 5 nights if the timeframe is available between guest stays).

Though not illegal, the vast majority of issues caused by a short stay e.g. noise disruption,  damage to common property, misuse of building services etc are mainly due to poorly managed and monitored 1-2 night stays. Certainly,  when its managed poorly this is where an investor’s pursuit of a higher rental yield can be argued to be at the cost of others, notably neighbors and Owners Corporations.

Myth 2 – Short Stays are young people looking for a party venue.

Predominantly short stay guests represent a significantly broader demographic. Short stays attract Tourists, visiting professionals on short term contracts, some are even locals who are in between long term residences, visiting from interstate or even production companies requiring housing for key cast and crew members through to  people requiring specialist health care… are a snapshot of people who are in the market for secure quality short term stays. 

AirBnB was created to provide an immersive global community, for people of all backgrounds wanting a local experience. Where people are seeking to be pampered or to party, they generally fall outside of the service offering of Silver Service Boutique short stay.

Though 1-2 nights as a minimum offering does increase the risk of attracting irresponsible thrill-seekers. We do our best to vet such and steer them towards other accommodations. Depending on the intentions or needs of a prospective short stay guest, we recommend them to seek out these alternatives. 

Myth 3. A Short Stay Landlord is simply motivated by higher yield.

For over a decade we have worked very closely with our clients, we know them all very well. Hand on heart we can say categorically that the Landlords of Silver Service Real Estate Boutique Short Stays truly do care about the effect their endeavours have on their neighbours, building and their own property. 

At the end of the day our Landlords look to the long term opportunity of their investment and are not motivated by a short term return that could impact their properties value and or the buildings value.

Badly managed short stay properties can require a lot of maintenance and turn the “short term return” to a long term cost.

Silver Services Boutique short stays are delighted to have positive engagement with all of the buildings/Owners Corporations that we interact with and, we receive regular referrals from building managers who are being approached by potential short stay landlords.

 We agree that some Landlords are motivated predominantly by the commercial nature of their investment property, and many don’t care for the impact their endeavors cause – again this is not our clients at Silver Service Real Estate, nor is it the type of business activities we engage with.

Myth 5. Easy money.

As a licensed estate agency with over 50 years combined experience, we bring a higher level of rigor and process to rentals for short stay than the average person managing their own property. We have taken on Short Stays in this area of management because our valued clientele have asked us to do so.

The results for the past few years have been overwhelmingly positive for both the guest, building and landlord alike. 

We regularly receive feedback from our happy clients on AirBnB and google reviews praising us for the quality of service provided, the ease of the location and how readily available all the amenities are from the apartments we let. Short stays have now become more popular option for business, individuals and professionals due to the comfort, flexibility and the ease of booking. 

We are delighted to share with you many of the posts and recommendations we have as displayed on our website, AirBnB and across social media. However, if our clients wish to stop offering short stays, we will remove our representation. We are a real estate business that is now, gratefully,  enjoying its second decade of service.

We would be happy to discuss any questions you may have about the short stay marketplace, we welcome your enquiry to help you understand the truth. 

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Keep Yourself Fire Safe!

Summer is right around the corner and we all love a good BBQ. But sometimes a small mistake can lead up to a huge catastrophe.

Staying safe is everyone’s priority and it is important that we as a part of the greater community take extra precaution and make sure all safety measure are applied.

Some Apartment Building have combustible cladding on the outside. Combustible cladding on the exterior of a building doesn’t necessarily mean that your building is unsafe. However, once a fire starts combustible cladding may contribute to the spread of fire. This not only affects building occupants, but also bystanders and adjoining buildings. When doing a BBQ or using any open open flame outside or in your Balcony make sure you stay fire safe.

There are a few simple steps that you should follow to minimise the risk of fire and will keep you, your neighbours and your family safe

  1. Isolate your BBQ Ensure your BBQ is at least 50 cm from walls, clothing and other materials 
  2. Fully extinguish your cigarette Use a heavy, high-sided ashtray (made of glass, ceramic or metal)
  3. Isolate AC units Ensure clothing and other materials are kept at least 1 meter away
  4. Isolate gas bottles Ensure gas bottles are stored outside, upright and away from sources of heat 

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#Redefined #lovemyhome #melbournesilverservice #silverserviceshortstay #propertytrendss

Visit us at to learn more about new properties on the market.

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Stellar Review from our Short Stay customer !

You know you are in the right business when your clients give you such amazing feedback !

‘Shelley was there to personally greet us (even with a late check in!) and ensure we settled in to the flat. She went above and beyond, and the gorgeous flat was simply perfect for our stay – stylish, cozy and what a location! Thank you!’

At Silver Service Real Estate, we love what we do and it reflects in our work as well.

Everything underpinned by our no-compromise attitude to set the highest standards in service.

Check out our Short stay Boutique Hotels at 

Talk to one of our dedicated team members at [email protected] or call us +61 (0) 3 9855 1197 +61 (0) 3 9855 0541

We have exactly what you might be looking for!

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Is your property Management company delivering you the right service?

In order to evaluate the quality of service you receive, ask yourself these questions;
-Are they prompt with their responses to your queries or concerns without you having to constantly call or email for them to pay attention to you?
– Do you receive your rent consistently every month?
– Are they transparent about their fees, or are you being charged fees that you were not informed about initially?
– Do you trust them to get your property filled within a quick turnaround time after a tenant moves out?
– Do they address repairs?

If the answer to any of this is NO, You need to rethink the quality of service you are receiving.

Good news is, we at Silver Service Real Estate are always available. Give us a call and see the kind of service you deserve. 
Tap the link and see how you can switch:
#melbournehomes, #realestate#realestateau#melb, #silverservicere#customerfirst#heretoserve#realestatemelbourne, #realestateredefined#lovemyhome#melbournesilverservice, #silverserviceshortstay#propertytrends#thehub#jointventure,#weloveourjob#Silverservicerealestate, #SSRE#melbourne, #tenyearson, #Thehub, #business