Tenant review website flags Perth rental properties as ‘dumps’


Stock image.
Stock image.

HUNDREDS of houses across Perth – including the former home of infamous serial killers the Birnies – have been named as dumps on a tenant review website.

The website, dontrentme.com/au, lets tenants review bad houses they’ve found themselves living in and warn others before they make the same mistake.

There are more than 200 houses listed from across Perth on the site, including the Willagee house where the Birnies committed their heinous crimes in the 1980s.

Website creator Anthony Ziebell, from Sydney, said it was perfectly legal for tenants to review houses on the website.

“Tenants need to realise they are consumers,” he said.

“In Australia we have a right to review a service.

“We review restaurants, hotels and movies, why not real estate?”

Mr Ziebell created the website after a bad experience of his own.

“I had a rental where the oven didn’t work for six months,” he said.

“I was very patient even though it is considered an emergency item.”

When Mr Ziebell decided not to continue his lease, the landlords then attempted to take his bond.

The website receives more than 100 reviews a day and has been opened up to allow reviews from the US and UK.

Mr Ziebell said he read most of the reviews and said there were some real standouts.

“Sometimes we go out and film them,” he said.

“We’ve seen sewage overflowing and we’ve heard of landlords walking in while they’re in the shower.

“You think that can’t be true and then they show the police report.”

A rental in Rockingham is described as poor quality.

“Backs of kitchen cupboard were cardboard and duct tape. Holes in cardboard where you could see right through to garden outside,” the tenant wrote.

Meanwhile, a house in Mandurah had rats, a leaking roof and a tree inside the bedroom wall.

Mr Ziebell said one of the worst homes he had seen looked like a construction site.

It had patchy paintwork and extension cords running from outdoors to indoors.

“There’s all sorts of crazy stories,” he said.

The real estate industry has tenancy databases where bad tenants can be blacklisted – however, this is a first for tenants.

“If I were blacklisted, how would I know? You have to pay to see if you’re on that,” Mr Ziebell said.

He pointed out that with his website it was free for landlords to see if they or their property were listed.

“With it picking up in the US and UK at the moment – we can see that fortunately we aren’t alone as tenants, it’s an around the world experience,” he said.

Mr Ziebell said they were willing hide bad reviews if the landlord or agent could prove they had fixed the problem.

“But if they’re reported a second time around, everything comes back,” he said.

“People cannot be blacklisted for leaving a review.

“And if they are we’ll do what we can to get it off.”

 

Mr Ziebell’s advice to reviewers:

Be truthful – if you stop being honest it becomes defamation.

Use the house address and the name of the company. Don’t name landlords or agents personally.

 

Suburbs containing properties flagged on the site:

Alfred Cove
Alkimos
Applecross
Armadale
Baker’s Hill
Balcatta
Baldivis
Balga
Bayswater
Beckenham
Bedford
Bedfordale
Beechboro
Belmont
Bibra Lake
Boya
Brigadoon
Bullsbrook
Butler
Byford
Calista
Camillo
Canning Vale
Carlisle
City Beach
Cloverdale
Cockburn Central
Como
Coodanup
Currambine
Dalkeith
Dianella
Doubleview
Dudley Park
Duncraig
East Perth
East Victoria Park
Ellenbrook
Falcon
Ferndale
Forrestfield
Furnissdale
Gooseberry Hill
Gosnells
Greenfields
Greenwood
Halls Head
Hamersley
Heathridge
Highgate
High Wycombe
Hillarys
Hocking
Innaloo
Joondalup
Kalamunda
Kardinya
Kelmscott
Kensington
Kenwick
Kingsley
Kinross
Lathlain
Leederville
Leeming
Lockridge
Lynwood
Maddington
Maylands
Medina
Melville
Merriwa
Middle Swan
Midland
Morley
Mount Hawthorn
Murdoch
Nedlands
Nollamara
North Lake
North Perth
Ocean Reef
O’Connor
Orelia
Osborne Park
Palmyra
Parkwood
Parmelia
Perth
Piara Waters
Piesse Brook
Pinjarra
Quinns Rocks
Riverton
Rockingham
Samson
Scarborough
Shelley
South Lake
South Perth
St James
Stratton
Thornlie
Victoria Park
Waikiki
Warnbro
Warwick
Wellard
Wembley
West Coolup
West Perth
Willagee
Willetton
Wilson
Winthrop
Yanchep
Yangebup