I know theres a few of us out there renting and having to deal with the 'joys' of Adelaide landlords/agents so thought Id share my experience. We have been in a dispute with our rental agency for 4 months now (all the time our bond being held of course).
To give some balance this is our 4th rental in Adelaide and there have never been any issues with agents, we always got a professional exit clean and bonds always returned in full. Until now...... At the last exit inspection the cowboy agents came up with some nonsense 'issues' which would have taken $1500 from our bond.
I honestly think some agents rely on tenants in these situations not being able to have their bond money tied up while a hearing is scheduled (having an entire bond suspended for 4 months, many people will rely on this to fund the next bond!) or they assume tenants are unaware of any redress available to them, or maybe don't want the hassle.
Anyway we took our case to the tribunal and they ruled in our favour and bond returned so a good outcome in the end. For anyone out there whose been in the wrong end of rogue landlords/agents - and theres a few out there - don't let them bully you, if you think you have a case go to the South Australian Civil & Administrative Tribunal (SACAT). There is a fee but the landlord has to cover this so no cost for tenants.
Its fairly formal if it gets to a hearing, you have to swear under oath but the judge I have to say was superb, the agent representative was fairly aggressive at times but the judge was having none of it and put her back in her box a few times . Bit like a female Judge Rinder actually
If anyone wants advice on the tribunal process feel free to PM. Cheers