Here’s a summary of the proposed changes:
- The abolishment of without grounds terminations and evictions – property owners to only end tenancies for approved reasons
- All rental properties must be weatherproof and structurally sound and must meet minimum standards for plumbing and drainage, security, fixtures and fittings, pests, vermin and infestation, ventilation, lighting, privacy and cooking and food preparation facilities
- Tenants will be able to make minor health, safety, security and accessibility changes to rental properties without the owner’s consent
- Tenants experiencing domestic or family violence can provide seven days’ notice to exit a tenancy and leave quickly or immediately
- Property owners cannot unreasonably refuse a tenant’s request to keep a pet
Let’s break down what the Queensland rental reforms mean for landlords and tenants.
What do the rental reforms mean for landlords?
First and foremost, the proposed changes abolish a landlord’s right not to renew a tenancy agreement at the end of its agreed term. Landlords can only end a tenancy for approved reasons such as:
- The landlord or their immediate family needs to move in
- The property has been sold or vacant possession is required
- There has been a significant breach of the tenancy agreement
- A person is occupying the property without consent
The reforms also introduce minimum housing standards and repair and maintenance obligations. If the rental property doesn’t meet minimum standards, it cannot be rented or rent must be reduced until maintenance is completed, which can mean loss of income for landlords.
Tenants will have seven days to complete and return the entry condition report and they will be able to authorise up to four weeks’ rent for emergency repairs, instead of the current two weeks’ rent. If the landlord is unavailable, the property manager will be able to authorise up to four weeks’ rent for emergency repairs.
Additionally, tenants do not have to obtain landlord permission to make minor modifications to the rental property for health, safety, security and accessibility reasons. This includes adding deadlocks, grab rails and furniture anchors. While tenants must inform the landlord of any changes, landlords can only refuse the changes by obtaining an order from QCAT.
Lastly, landlords cannot unreasonably refuse a tenant’s request to keep a pet unless the property is unsuitable for the pet or there are unacceptable health or safety risks. However, landlords can require the tenant to meet special conditions such as paying a pet bond.
The Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) has been petitioning against the reforms since their announcement as a third of dwellings in Queensland are investor owned, and thus the changes have “the potential to destroy Queensland’s rental market”.
REIQ CEO Antonia Mercorella has called the proposed reforms a “slap in the face to every day mum and dad property owners” and predicts a decline in investor activity that could negatively impact rental supply and vacancy rates.
“Under the reforms, landlords will see their fundamental rights eroded, making property investment far less appealing, and as a result, we’ll almost certainly see investment levels drop,” said Ms Mercorella.
What do the rental reforms mean for tenants?
According to Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Member for South Brisbane Jackie Trad, more than a third of Queensland households live in rental properties, with the figure rising to three in every five in some areas like the inner city. This means that the proposed changes affect a large number of people in the Sunshine State.
The abolishment of without grounds terminations and evictions, introduction of minimum housing standards and improved domestic violence protections aim to make renting safer and more secure for tenants. Existing repair and maintenance provisions will be enhanced and tenants experiencing domestic and family violence will be able to install security measures and provide seven days’ notice to exit a tenancy and leave quickly or immediately.
The reforms also introduce the right for tenants to make minor modifications for health, safety, security and accessibility reasons without landlord consent. These modifications must be carried out by a qualified tradesperson when required and any damage incurred must be repaired. Conversely, personalisation, energy efficiency and communication service connection changes such as hanging pictures or cable television connections still require landlord consent.
Tenants with pets will have increased access to rental properties as landlords cannot unreasonably refuse a tenant’s request to keep a pet. However, landlords can require the tenant to meet special conditions such as paying a pet bond or paying for professional pest control or carpet cleaning at the end of the tenancy. If the pet has caused any damage to the rental property during the tenancy, the tenant will be held responsible.
On the other hand, the proposed reforms will likely inflate rents for tenants due to an eventual decline in housing supply. As conditions become more unfavourable for landlords in Queensland, existing investors may sell their properties and investor activity will likely decrease. This will negatively impact the construction sector and those working in the real estate industry may face unemployment.
According to analysis by Propertyology Head of Research Simon Pressley, “reforms could cause rents to skyrocket by $100 a week” or $5,000 annually over the next two years due to the inevitable decrease in investor activity, subsequent domino effect and eventual decline in housing supply.
Minister for Housing and Public Works, Mick de Brenni acknowledged that he believed the reforms would likely increase weekly rents by 5%, from an average of $360 per week to $378 per week.
“With many existing owners of Queensland investment properties already disappointed by the poor financial performance of their asset, this new legislation will be the final straw for some owners,” Mr Pressley said.
Let us know your thoughts on What the Queensland Rental Reforms Mean For Landlords and Tenants by emailing email@example.com
Posted by Silvia Liu on Jan 24, 2020 – Propertyme
Reposted by Karen Herbert Feb 3, 2020 – Arrive
RentBond allows renters to pay their rental bond, two weeks’ rent in advance and other moving costs upfront and repay in two flexible ways.
If the applicant just needs a short-term loan while waiting on their bond to be refunded from their previous property, RentBond lets them borrow the funds for up to 21 days at no cost. Once they receive their bond refund and pay the RentBond loan back in full within the first 21 days, they won’t pay interest or any other costs.
RentBond benefits for property managers
- The 21-day interest-free period means renters can fund their new bond at no cost, while they’re waiting on their previous bond to be returned
- If the applicant repays the full amount within 21 days (e.g. when they’ve got their previous bond back), they won’t be charged any interest or fees
- All successful applicants will have passed affordability and credit checks
- No extra paperwork or processes required from the property manager
- Option to pay the bond directly to the agent’s trust account, to the relevant bond authority or the renter.
RentBond applicants undergo a credit check as part of the process, and other eligibility criteria apply.
Through its joint venture with Fair Go Finance, rent.com.au aims to empower renters with greater financial flexibility and convenience when funding their next rental bond.
Fair Go is providing financial technology to facilitate the expansion of RentBond’s features, taking the product to the next level in terms of convenience and attractiveness.
Making bond payments easier for agents
The already market-leading bond payment solution is just one of rent.com.au’s products and services that make the renting process easier for agents, tenants and landlords. RentBond helps renters cover their bond and moving costs (up to $10,000) while they’re waiting for their bond refund from their previous rental.
The new interest-free feature has the potential to change how people manage their money during their move, Mr Bader said. “It fits with our goal of simplifying the moving process. RentBond is perfect for the savvy renter who carefully controls how and when they pay. It can help with the “cash squeeze” if you’re still waiting on the old bond to be returned but need to secure that new dream property.”
“From real estate agents’ perspectives, it guarantees bond payment on time, with payment made directly to an office trust account, the bond authority (where applicable), or transferred from the applicant themselves,” Mr Bader said. “This means the agent has the security of knowing that the bond is covered”
In November, Sydney’s house rents inched lower by 0.8% to $595/week – the first month-on-month decline for this property type in over a year. Despite the fall, Rent.com.au’s latest data shows the New South Wales capital continues to lead the list for unaffordability for both houses and apartments, contended only by Canberra and Hobart, in most cases.
Across the country, national median rents were unchanged for both property types, but some marketing tightening is evident as we move towards the rental market’s busier season, with asking median rents (apartments) up in Darwin (6.3% to $340/week), Hobart (4.6% to $400/week), Adelaide (3.2% to $320/week) and Canberra (2.2% to $460/week). House rents were also up in Hobart (2.2% to $460/week), Canberra (1.8% to $560/week) and Brisbane (1.1% to $440/week).
Despite the upward movement in these capitals, some relief could be felt for tenants in Sydney searching for houses, with a fall finally recorded in the median rent for houses – down 0.8% to $595/week. The median rent has remained unchanged in the New South Wales capital for more than a year.
The most affordable apartments in November could be found in Adelaide, with asking rents now at $320/week (up 3.2% month-on-month), while Perth house prices were still lowest at $370/week, down 1.3% month-on-month.
Price per room in November 2019
The cost of renting a room in Australia increased year-on-year in November, with a rise in both apartment and house rents nationally. The national median for apartments in Australia’s metro areas was $275/week in November, up 3.8% from November ‘18, while house room prices rose 4.5% nationally to $153/week.
Across the state and territory capitals, the biggest jump was in Melbourne apartment room prices, a 10% increase year-on-year, with rooms now priced at $275/week.
Five of the country’s capitals recorded an increase in room prices across both property types year-on-year – Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide and Hobart.
Median rents across Australia’s regional areas remained relatively stable in November – just as it did in October – with no change in the median rent of $380 nationally. South Australia recorded the cheapest regional rent prices by far, with a median rent stable at just $280/week. Regional rents were most expensive in the Northern Territory at $460/week, up 4.5% from October.
Time on market
Rent.com.au’s average time on market measure provides context to the movement in asking rents across the country. The most noticeable shift month-on-month was in Canberra apartments, which came off market 30% faster in November, taking 15 days on average to move. Melbourne houses, conversely, came off market 3% slower in November, an average of 23 days to lease on Rent.com.au. Of the five largest state capitals, the most significant change was in Adelaide, where apartments took 20% less time to lease – averaging 16 days on market.
Looking at house rents, the only capital to record a slowdown month-on-month was Darwin. Properties in the NT capital took 4% longer to shift than in October 2019.
To view original article and see rental market update table comparison, visit Rent.com.au.
Queensland’s property market has done better than other states but hasn’t entirely escaped the downturn. Queensland can be divided into “three distinct groups,” according to Ell:
- The first is the bulk of Brisbane, which has seen healthy growth but is now seeing a moderate correction. “The outlook for these housing markets remains either flat or mildly positive over the forecast period.”
- The second is ‘lifestyle areas’ such as the Sunshine Coast, Wide Bay, and Cairns, which are expected to perform better in 2020 and 2021.
- The third Queensland housing market region consists of “commodity or agriculture-producing areas”, such as Central Queensland, Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday, and Darling Downs-Maranoa. Property values in these areas have suffered due to the end of the mining boom, and drought conditions will see further declines.
Brisbane is forecast to see growth of 2 per cent in 2020 and a further 3.7 per cent in 2021.
We will conduct a routine inspection at the property within the first 3 months of an initial lease commencing. If we are satisfied with the standard of the property, we will schedule 3-6 monthly inspections as necessary.
The purpose of a routine inspection is to provide a report to the owner that the residents are maintaining the property in good order, and also to check for any repairs that may be necessary. Please note, however, that it is the responsibility of a lease holder to report any repairs or maintenance through our on-line resident portal. We appreciate you taking the time to report such items!
Another reason for conducting routine inspections is to make any recommendations to the owner that will enhance the property where possible, thereby offering a safe and inviting home for our residents.
So let’s get to it!
What we look at inside
- Walls / light switches / skirting boards /doorways and doors are clean from marks
- Ceilings are free of mould
- Carpets are stain free
- Windows and screens are clean
- Light fittings and ceiling fans are clean and free of dust and light bulbs are working
- Kitchen are is clean and the oven / stove top is free of burnt on food and stains
- Shower, Bathroom and toilet are clean, particularly, shower tiles, shower glass screens and door free of scum build up
What We look at outside
- The lawns are cut and edged
- Gardens are tidy, weeds removed, hedges trimmed to a reasonable height
- Rubbish / lawn clippings removed
- Oil stains removed from carports, garages and driveways
- Swimming pool / spa – water and sides / bottom clean not GREEN
If you have an approved pet
- Any droppings are picked up and removed
- Any pet damage is repaired
- Ensure your dog/s are properly restrained for the inspection please
Thank you for helping us to maintain the property and your home to the best that it can be.
Please let us know if you would like some further information on cleaning tips or ECO friendly products that are available now.
October 3rd – 9th is Neighbourhood Watch Week. Many of our owners and tenants are parents, so this October, we thought we’d give you a little more information on this truly great cause.
NHW Week aims to raise public awareness of NHW and the benefits of belonging to a local Neighbourhood Watch group.
The aim is to increase membership of and encourage participation in Neighbourhood Watch programs throughout Australia.
NHW’s aims are:
- To strengthen our resilience against crime
- To work together with Police and the community
- To feel safer in our homes and within our local communities and;
- To make our communities better places to live
If you are interested in participating in your local Neighbourhood Watch and ensuring your kids can run around your neighbourhood safely this summer, you might be interested in NHW Connect Digital.
NHW Connect Digital
NHW Connect is a digital, community lead safety and awareness program, run by everyday people in their immediate communities. People just like you!
Neighbourhood Watch groups work together to learn how to reduce crime as well as to increase the safety, security and quality of life for everyone in your local neighbourhood.
Join NHW Connect’s online community app can allow you to:
- Connect with your local neighbourhood groups and chat to one another
- Feel more connected within your community
- Prevent crime and reduce fear of crime
- Work together for safer, connected and inclusive communities
With Storm Season approaching, we have compiled some tips to ensure you and your home stay safe this summer.
During storm season in Brisbane, clogged gutters are some of the most common culprits of damage to
property. Ensuring your gutters are clear of debris is a key factor in safeguarding your house.
- Full gutters can cause drainage problems resulting in an overflow of water escaping onto your property; and eventually can cause the gutter to fall off due to the weight of the water.
- Full gutters can also cause the water to become stagnant creating the perfect breeding ground
for mosquito larvae to hatch. Stagnant water can also cause an unwanted odor.
- Water pooling can also cause your gutters to prematurely rust.
If you believe that your gutters might be blocked or the gutters in your rental property are blocked, please email : firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can potentially arrange for this to be attended to. PLEASE NOTE: Please do not climb on ladders to assess the gutters.
If you have any trees on your property (even ones that don’t directly hang over your home),
ask yourself these questions:
- Does it appear that the branches need to be pruned?
- Is there a large amount of deadwood on these trees?
- Do any trees appear to be unstable?
- Are there any trees/branches growing into POWER LINES?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, please CONTACT email@example.com so that we can have a professional address the issues, ensuring you and your family stay safe this summer.
Important Updates and Contact Numbers
It is very useful to keep a list of emergency contacts, including the SES and Energex, in the case of a fallen powerline or power outage. The Bureau of Meteorology also has great updates on any weather patterns that could affect you, visit bom.com.au
SES: 132 500
Energex: 13 62 62
Did you know that we can help businesses reduce their energy costs and environmental footprint by providing financial solutions for energy efficient equipment to suit a variety of business needs?
Finance options are available to assist with the purchase of energy efficient assets including:
- Solar Storage and Standalone Technologies
- Energy Efficient Solutions including Lighting
- Hot Water including Hybrid Systems
- Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC)
- Wind Turbines
- Off-grid Solutions
Assets can be installed in both owned and leased premises, with finance structured to maximise the cost savings to your business.
We are also seeing lenders deliver incentives designed to encourage the purchase of eligible vehicles that reduce emissions. The list is extensive and not just limited to hybrid or battery operated vehicles. Similarly, plant and equipment that reduces emissions by 20% could also be eligible.
Potential savings may be significant, so exploring these options with your broker as part of your purchase decision could well be worth your time.
Our brokers constantly monitor lender products and changes, including energy efficient finance. So the next time you need business finance tailor-made for you, give us a call and we’ll take you through all the options.
Victor Larder, Astute Financial
Astute Financial Management Pty Ltd | ABN 59 093 587 010 | Australian Credit Licence Number 364253. AIW Dealer Services Pty Ltd | ABN 59 153 322 420 | Australian Financial Services Licence Number 414256