An Australian real estate agency has gone viral for suggesting tenants that they could buy their landlord a gift for Christmas.
Queensland-based Kanik & Co sent out a memo to all of their tenants saying December 25th is the time to give and it wouldn’t be great if the person who owned your place got a gift.
“This year has been particularly difficult for our tenants and landlords alike, and we understand that some tenants want to thank their landlord for everything in 2021,” the agency wrote.
“The choice to be involved is 100% optional and you certainly don’t have to.”
If the tenant could not find anything to obtain, Kanik & Co was willing to arrange the gift on behalf of the tenant.
They could shell out $ 50 for a “grazing box of white wine,” $ 55 would offer them a “festive candy basket” and the top prize of $ 115 would give the owner “all that is gold”.
When some tenants walked through the absolute ringtone during the pandemic, many people on Twitter thought this memo sounded a bit out of touch.
What is even more scandalous is that several reports have found that Logan in Brisbane, where the Kanik & Co agency is based, has seen rental prices rise over the past two years.
A joint survey by the Queensland government and Deloitte found that rents jumped 4.1% from March of last year to March of this year.
There were even larger rental increases in Brisbane (7.3%), the Gold Coast (9.8%) and the Sunshine Coast (16%).
So it’s no surprise that people on social media were baffled by the idea of giving a Christmas present to a landlord when these are tenants who could have been hit by higher rent.
The director of Kanik & Co cleared up the confusion and said it was just “something cool” to do around Christmas.
“Each tenant and owner is unique, and some of them wanted to thank their owners and wanted us to help us make it easier,” Michael Kanik told Guardian Australia.
“We can see where some of the criticism is coming from, the rents are obviously going up across the board, but not all landlords are the same, some don’t want to raise the prices.”
“We had tenants or landlords who wanted to exchange Christmas presents and cards, and we wanted us to do that. We just wanted to do a good thing, that’s all.”