Amendments to the Residential Tenancies Act: What It Means For Landlords and Tenants
The Residential Tenancies Act will receive an update for the first time in years, and in the second half of next year, the following new amendments will be published.
No Grounds Terminations to Remain Unchanged
Currently, for a fixed-term lease, owners and tenants are required to give 30 days’ notice for a lease to be terminated. For a periodic lease, the owners are required to give 60 days’ notice (unless selling the property) and the tenants 21 days’ notice.
Rent Bidding to Be Prohibited
This has been a hot topic for many months across the Perth metro, and all owners whose properties are managed by Listed Estate Agents and who have secured lease renewals have certainly benefited from rent increases. At Listed Estate Agents, we conduct up-to-date market research to ensure we advertise the correct market rent for prospective tenants.
Rent Increases Are to Be Limited to Once a Year in Both Fixed and Periodic Leases
This measure is to reduce the volume of private landlords or rogue agencies who are not sticking to the current guidelines that rents can be increased every six months in a periodic lease and every six months in a fixed-term lease if it is written in the lease.
Tenants Will Be Able to Have Pets in Most Cases
This amendment will surely please so many tenants who have had to sadly rehome their pets to remain competitive in this current rental climate. Come next year, a decision of no pets on an advertised property will require approval from the Commissioner for Consumer Protection and only be on certain grounds.
Tenants Will Be Able to Make Certain Minor Modifications to the Rental Premises
Often a complex and grey area under current legislation, tenants can become frustrated at what they believe is a lack of flexibility on the owners’ part, at a minor modification in what is their home for the duration of the tenancy. At Listed Estate Agents, our property management team takes pride in having real conversations with owners and tenants around this topic to ascertain the extent of the works proposed and to advise how to rectify the works on vacate if this is what the owner desires. In the future, owners can refuse on certain grounds, but clarification of what this means exactly is yet to be made public.
The Release of Security Bonds at the End of a Tenancy Will Be Streamlined
Music to our ears because the release of the tenancy bond can be an area of great stress and labour for all parties involved. One of the things this will allow for is for tenants and property owners to apply separately regarding how bond payments are to be disbursed.
Disputes Will Be Referred to the Commissioner for Consumer Protection for Determination
This includes disputes over bond payments, pets, and minor modifications. Our team at Listed Estate Agents are confident that this last amendment will help to ensure more consistency across the industry with a regulated approach to disputes. One of our company values is to have a thirst for knowledge and a commitment to improvement of practice. Our belief is that, in turn, this improves the experience of the client.