Review of the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008
As you may remember we provided information via our blogs and newsletters regarding the pending reform and how that reform may look based on the submissions received by the Queensland Government, mainly by tenants with overall little submissions received by Property Owners/Landlords and Property Managers.
On Friday evening The Minister for Housing and Public Works, Mick de Brenni has announced Stage 1 of proposed rental reforms that would significantly damage Queensland’s rental market and create the most onerous rental laws in the country.
If enacted, the law change would erode fundamental landlord rights and deter property investment across the state.
The reforms’ ripple effect would see renters struggling to find suitable housing under already tight conditions.
In a further blow to renters, by de Brenni’s own admission the reform would likely increase weekly rent from an average of $360 per week to $378, which is a massive 5 per cent rise.
The most controversial and damaging reform is the proposed abolishment of a landlord’s right to not renew a tenancy agreement at the end of its agreed term.
In practice, this will allow a tenant to remain in a tenancy indefinitely and for as long as they want unless the landlord can establish a reason prescribed by law.
This reform has been cleverly disguised by the Palaszczuk Government as the abolishment of ‘without grounds terminations or evictions’ - that description is inaccurate and misleading.
Under current rental laws, landlords cannot end a fixed term tenancy agreement before it ends unless a breach has occurred.
Other proposed reforms include:
• the loss of a landlord’s right to refuse pets;
• the introduction of a tenant right to make modifications to a rental property without the landlord’s consent; and
• the introduction of minimum housing standards requiring the rental property and its inclusions to meet prescribed standards and to be in a certain state of repair.
Queensland has one of the highest proportions of renters in Australia with more than 34 per cent of Queensland households in the rental market.
The vast majority of rental housing is provided by everyday Queenslanders, and many of those are already making a loss on their investments.
Given the significance of these reforms, we are disappointed that the Minister is offering a mere six week consultation process after waiting a year to announce these reforms.
On its face, the Government may think it is protecting tenants but in reality, we are likely to see housing supply reduce.
There will be no winners.
As a community, it's time for us to unite and fight against these damaging and disingenuous reforms, which will negatively impact both landlords and renters.
The below information has been sourced from the document attached called Review overview. Stage 1 has been released as part of a Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement.
The 5 key areas of reform are noted below and detailed in the Consultation Regulatory Impact statement. Stage 2 is expected to be released later in 2020. The legislative amendment bill is the next part of the process.
Sourced from Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement Stage 1 reforms – page 28 & Realestate Excellence
1. Managing tenancies
Amend the RTRA Act to remove the ability of a property owner to end a tenancy without ground
Amend the RTRA Act to specify additional grounds for an owner or a tenant to end a tenancy
2. Safety and security Housing quality and Minimum Housing Standards
Apply Minimum Housing Standards in regulation
Amend the RTRA Act to enhance tribunal repair orders
Amend the RTRA Act to increase the time for tenants to return a condition report
Amend the RTRA Act to require property owners to provide owner and nominated repairer contact details
Amend the RTRA Act to allow tenants and property managers to authorise emergency repairs to the value of four weeks’ rent
Amend the RTRA Act to prescribe maximum timeframes for Minimum Housing Standards repairs
3. Domestic and family violence protections
Amend the RTRA Act to allow people experiencing domestic and family violence to end a tenancy at short notice
Amend the RTRA Act to allow people experiencing domestic and family violence to more easily access rental bond funds
4. Minor modifications
Amend the RTRA Act to allow tenants to make minor modifications for disability, security and health and safety reasons without the property owner’s permission
Amend the RTRA Act to require property owners to respond to tenant request for other minor modifications within seven (7) days
5. Renting with pets
Encourage voluntary information disclosure by tenants and property owners relating to pets
Amend the RTRA Act to provide for pet bonds and special pest control conditions
Amend the RTRA Act to require property owners to provide reasonable grounds for refusing a pet
Amend the RTRA Act to allow property owners to obtain QCAT orders excluding pets from a property
We STRONGLY suggest all landlords have their say by completing a submission to the government via the filling link here
The following documents have been attached for your reference and review;
Q STATE PROPERTIES
Ph: 1300 Q STATE
Information Sourced from Queensland Government, Realestate Excellence and REIQ
This article is for general information purposes only and must not be taken as legal, financial or any other professional advice. We recommend obtaining advice specific to your situation before making decisions relating to your investment property and financial position.
Our Landlord Monthly Newsletter is out now....click on the link below to view your copy now.
A Buyers Agent is an independent licensed real estate agent that works for the buyer. They will have their clients best interests at heart and negotiate and act in favour of their client. They are not the selling agent who is working for the seller, we do not receive kickbacks, commissions or rebates from any other source. The buyers agent sole focus is to undertake a step by step process that ensures that the buyer purchases the best possible property to suit their needs, at the best possible price and conditions. The service can be all inclusive, or you may wish to engage a Concierge Service as required.
The buyers agent should work with you, they should find out what is important to you. For example; What kind of property are you looking for? What are your wants and needs? What area are you hoping to purchase in? This information allows the buyers agent to start the search for your ideal purchase. They will undertake the due diligence and legwork to create a short list of possible properties to review. They should be able to eliminate any properties that appear relevant, but on further inspection aren’t quite right. The buyers agent will use their working relationships with selling agents to review any “off market” listings and new upcoming listings.
The buyers agent will provide analysis of any shortlisted properties. Analysing the quality and value of the property, the listed price, the current market conditions and anticipated value.
Once a property has been selected the Buyers Agent will negotiate on your behalf, they are experienced negotiators and will work to achieve the best possible price, or to represent and bid for you at auction.
The Buyers agent service also includes Pre Settlement and Contract Conditional Process. Managing the conditional phase of the contract to ensure that all obligations and deadlines are met. The introduction or liaising with solicitors for conveyancing and arranging of building and pest inspections. The buyers agent will also attend pre settlement inspections to ensure that everything is in order prior to settlement.
Buyers agents are becoming increasingly popular in Brisbane and across South East Queensland. Whether you are a first home buyer, a property investor or looking to purchase a million dollar investment, we can help you with your property journey, to find out how contact us today. Visit www.qstateproperties.com.au or call on 1300 778 283.
Tips for a smooth bond refund process
The Refund of rental bond form should be completed and sent to the Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) when the tenancy has ended. Disagreement over how a bond will be paid out is the most common form of dispute the RTA receives, accounting for more than half of all disputes. Listed below is important information and vital tips to help make the process straightforward for everyone involved.
Communicate early and often
The quickest and easiest way to make the bond refund process run smoothly for everyone is for the tenant and property manager/owner to reach agreement about how the bond will be paid out. Property managers/owners and tenants should communicate early and often to reach consensus.
Early discussions may be around cleaning of the property, whether any repairs are required, and other paperwork and processes required by the property manager/owner. This can help reduce the risk of surprises or disputes when the time comes to refund the bond.
Share information, photos and invoices to facilitate agreement. Refer to the entry condition report and any other relevant documentation such as invoices to support your conversations.
Ensure up-to-date contact and banking details are provided
The bond refund form should include current contact and banking details for all parties. It’s important to note that refunds are paid into Australian bank accounts only. By providing
the RTA with an email address on the bond refund form, you will receive updates on the progress of the bond refund. On average, the bond will be refunded within 5 days of the RTA receiving an agreed form.
Disputed or non-agreed refunds occur when there is no agreement on how the bond should be paid, or when the bond refund application is not signed by all parties to the bond. A Refund of rental bond only requires the signature of one person named on the bond record to begin the bond refund process, however the RTA recommends all parties communicate and try to reach agreement before making a claim on the bond.
In this situation, the RTA:
• releases any undisputed amounts
• holds any disputed amount/s
• sends a Notice of claim to the person/people who did not sign
the refund form, and they have 14 days to dispute the bond
• may assist with dispute resolution if a dispute resolution
request is received within 14 days.
Either party can make a claim on the rental bond if agreement
is not reached.
If making a partial claim, it is best practice to release the undisputed amount to the party who is owed the money. In addition, any claim on the bond should be substantiated with details of the claim (e.g. the reasons for making the claim) and the amount.
It is an offence under Queensland tenancy law to knowingly give false or misleading information to the RTA.
Watch the RTA’s instructional video for more tips about making the rental bond refund process quick and easy.
More information about the bond refund process can be found on the RTA’s website, https://www.rta.qld.gov.au/Renting/Ending-a-tenancy/Bond-refunds
Article from the REIQ PMSS Newsletter June 2019
We all love our furry friends. If you're someone who is home on your own a lot, a pet can be an especially great companion. Owning a pet, however, can make it harder to find a rental property and keep your current property in excellent condition. While it can be challenging, having a pet doesn't need to ruin your experience of finding a rental property or renting a home. You just need to be diligent about looking after your pet and the condition of your place. Here are our tips for renting with pets.
Be upfront and honest
When you're first searching for a rental property, make sure you're upfront and honest if you need to include pets on your application. Most property listings will detail if a property is pet-friendly. If the property isn't pet-friendly and it has outdoor space, you could call the property manager to see if the owner will consider an outdoor pet. This will be up to the owner's discretion; however, if you live in Victoria new laws have made it easier to rent a property if you have a pet.
Consider the size of the pet compared to the size of the property
When you're looking for properties, make sure you compare the size of your pet to the size of the properties you're viewing. If you have a large dog, you may prefer a townhouse or detached house over a small inner-city apartment. This step is all about understanding your pet's behaviour and what kind of environment it needs to behave and live a happy, healthy life.
Put together a pet resume
While there's a section of your application to list the basic details of your pet, putting together a pet resume can show your potential property manager or landlord that your pet is loved and well- behaved. The resume doesn't need to be long. You could simply include a photo, some brief details about your pet's temperament, details of vaccinations and any references you think would help.
Monitor bathroom breaks
This one is particularly important if you live in an apartment. Make sure you know when your pet needs to have a bathroom break. If you have an outdoor area that doesn't have grass, you could purchase an artificial grass patch to train your pet to use. Alternatively, you'll have to be mindful of how often your furry friend needs to be taken outside for a bathroom break.
Be mindful of porous surfaces
Once you've been approved for a property, be mindful of porous surfaces such as carpet. These surfaces can be easily damaged, even by humans, so make sure you train your pet to stay away from these areas if you're worried about property damage.
Renting with a pet can be stressful but keeping the above steps in mind in your property search, and once you've been approved for a property, can keep you, your furry friend and your property manager happy.
As Cyclone Oma approaches Queensland's southern coast as a CAT 1 your safety is first priority, and we encourage you to stay in touch with local authorities and heed all safety warnings and instructions.
Tropical Cyclone Oma is expected to move slowly southwest over the Coral Sea during the next couple of days. Abnormally high tides, dangerous surf, heightened sea state and strengthening winds are expected along the southern Queensland coast ahead of Oma.
Conditions can change quickly and we recommend you keep up to date on the latest forecast for your area on the Bureau of Meteorology's website.
We would like to take this opportunity to remind you of some of the ways that may help you prepare your family and property for the weather conditions ahead.
If you have time and it is safe, please take necessary precautions including, but not limited to the following:
REMEMBER - RAINFALL IS NOT EXPECT TO BE EXTREME HOWEVER THE GAIL FORCE WINDS ARE LIKELY TO BRING DOWN POWERLINES
Electrical - Rylec Qld Mob: 0437 435 411
Plumbing - Boss Plumbing Mob: 0415 272 227
Gas - Shawn Mob: 0408 775 285
Negotiating skills are essential to have in many situations particularly when you're navigating the purchase of large items or assets. With the high value that property transactions attract, knowing how to navigate the negotiation process is crucial. Not only can strong negotiation skills help you in other areas of your life, but it can save you thousands of dollars. Here are a few things to remember when you're negotiating your next property transaction.
It's got to feel win-win
The negotiation process needs to feel like a win for both parties in a transaction. If you negotiate too hard with a seller, they may not take you seriously, and the sale won't proceed. Similarly, if the seller negotiates too hard, you may be inclined to walk away. The key here is finding the middle ground for both parties to be happy with proceeding.
It's not all about dollars
While negotiating price is a big part of the property purchasing process, there are other terms and conditions that you shouldn't forget either. For example, as you negotiate on price, you can negotiate other terms and conditions too such as included fixtures and furnishings, finance terms, and building and pest terms. If you're buying a new property, you may have additional non- financial items you could negotiate as well including discounts on certain finishes and upgrades.
Knowledge is power
Entering a negotiation without adequate knowledge will diminish your chances of getting what you want out of the transaction. When you're purchasing a property, make sure you invest the time in building your knowledge base about the local property market, relevant property sale comparisons, and rental yields for the area. At this point, it may be worth paying for information if it will save you time and help you determine whether to proceed with the transaction in the first place.
Keep your options open
You never want to enter a negotiation appearing like this is your only option. Make sure the other party is convinced that you're looking at other properties and you have other options. Simply mention that you're looking at other options as you lay out the facts and figures in the negotiation process.
Have an expert help you
If you're new to negotiating, or the thought of negotiating a big transaction intimidates you, invest in getting some coaching to help you through the process. You could even engage someone to help in the property purchase process directly. Q State Properties can assist with our Buyers Agent Service.
If you would like to know on how we can help you with your next property transaction please do not hesitate to give us a call on 1300 778 283 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The holiday season a perfect time to catch up on reading. If you're typically a nonfiction reader, your reading time can be put to good use by learning more about property investment in Australia. Here's our list of property investment books that will help you learn while you recharge for 2019.
From 0 to 130 properties in 3.5 years - Steve McKnight
Steve McKnight's From 0 to 130 Properties in 3.5 Yearsis an inspiring read that shows readers how McKnight and his business partner built their portfolio. The book includes details about the individual properties that make up their portfolio and an outline of the numbers on each property. If you're aiming to build a cash flow positive portfolio, this book will help you understand the numbers and Australia's property market, while sharing details about how to effectively manage your finances.
How to Create an Income for Life - Margaret Lomas
Margaret Lomas has written several books about property investment, particularly positive cash flow properties. In How to Create an Income for Life, Lomas discusses not only how to build a cash flow positive portfolio, but she also touches on how to achieve financial freedom.
Rich Dad's Guide to Investing - Robert Kiyosaki
No investment reading list would be completed without Robert Kiyosaki's books! Covering investing in general, Kiyosaki's Rich Dad's Guide to Investing provides an insight into share trading and how to approach your property investing with a business-focused mindset. Following on from his first two books, Rich Dad, Poor Dad and The Cash Flow Quadrant, Kiyosaki's books will help you understand investment principles that stand the test of time across all asset classes.
Your Property Success with Renovation - Jane Slack-Smith
If you're keen to get your hands dirty, finding renovators can be an excellent way to enter the property investment market. In Your Property Success with Renovation, Jane Slack-Smith details the foundational principles of effective investing. Slack-Smith then covers how you can build a profitable portfolio by renovating properties.
The Advanced Guide to Real Estate Investing by Ken McElroy
Ken McElroy's, The Advanced Guide to Real Estate Investing is a helpful book for seasoned property investors. In this book, McElroy shows readers how to think and operate like a property mogul. He covers things like identifying profitable deals, effective tax structures, and how multi-family housing can help you build your portfolio.