Queensland becomes next state to face widespread rental reforms

The Queensland Government has announced a state-wide consultation to be followed with reforms to residential tenancy laws for renters and property owners.

The consultation began on 30 September and will involve renters, landlords and real estate agents being contacted and asked for their views around the changing market and how successful the current system is.

The reviews of the 40-year-old rental laws will be looking at making it easier for tenants to own pets and have repairs to property addressed sooner. Property owners will also have greater power to charge for repairs not covered by bonds.

More than a third of Queenslanders rent, giving the state the highest proportion of rentals in Australia.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said all Queenslanders deserve a safe, secure and sustainable home.

“My Government wants Queensland to have contemporary residential tenancy laws that protect tenants and property owners alike and improve stability in the rental market,” said Ms Palaszczuk.

“The last full-scale review and changes to the tenancy regulations date back to the 1970s. It’s well and truly time for another now.

“Currently 34 per cent of Queensland households are finding their homes in the rental market and many are renting for longer. In fact, 43 per cent of tenants have been renting for over 10 years.”

The Open Doors to Renting Reform consultation program runs from 30 September until 30 November 2018, featuring a range of consultation activities, including pop-up kiosks at markets and shopping centres where people can share their views and experience of renting in Queensland.

“Over the next three months, I want the state-wide consultation to come up with answers as to how can people better enforce their rights and how can competing interests be managed better,” Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni said.

“Many tenants have raised with me that it is difficult to hang your kids’ school photos or paintings on the wall in rental properties. Australians have one of the highest rates of pet ownership in the world with 62 per cent of households keeping a pet, however only 10 per cent of rental properties have pets living in them.

“How can we make it easier for landlords and tenants to agree on having a pet? How can we make it easier for tenants to add finishing touches to their home, without causing damage that would be costly for property owners?

“Property owners have raised with me that they want to see regular inspections to properties and for repairs to be addressed more quickly to ensure their investments are protected. And while Tenancy legislation provides the framework and processes to follow, sometimes things go wrong.”

All information about the consultation process can be found at yoursayhpw.engagementhq.com/rentinginqld

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Hannah Blackiston

Hannah Blackiston was an in-house journalist with Elite Agent. She worked with the company from January 2018 to January 2019.