Rental Provider Information
Before the property is leased
Rental providers must ensure that the property is provided in good repair and in a reasonably fit and suitable condition for occupation.
The property must be provided and maintained throughout the term of the tenancy in a suitable condition for occupation – regardless of the amount of rent paid, the property’s age or character and whether or not the renter was aware of any disrepair at the rented premises before entering into occupation of the premises.
Rental Provider are now required to provide a Disclosure document to the renter prior to signing the rental agreement.
Rental providers must ensure that the rented property meets the rental minimum standards prior to the commencement throughout the term of the tenancy.
Should the rental provider be non-compliant in these standards, the renter can terminate the rental agreement before they move in, or they can request an urgent repair to the property.
All external entry doors to the property must be fitted with a locking device that is operated by a key from the outside and may be unlocked from the inside or without a key. (unless one can not be fitted due to the design of the door).
Vermin proof bins: a rubbish bin and recycling bin are to be supplied to the renter, provided by the council or otherwise.
Toilets and Bathrooms
All toilets must be in good working order and be located in a separate room in the property, either by itself, or in an appropriate room like a bathroom or in a combined bathroom-laundry.
A bathroom must contain a washbasin, a shower or bath and must be connected to a reasonable supply of hot and cold water.
Showers must have a shower head with a 3-star water efficiency rating. If one cannot be installed, for example because of the property’s age, then a shower head with a 1- or 2-star rating is acceptable.
All properties must have a dedicated area for cooking and food preparation. The area must have a sink that is in good working order and is connected to a reasonable supply of hot and cold water.
A cooktop that is in good working order with two or more burners must be provided
If there is an oven at the property, it must be in good working order.
If laundry facilities are present, they must be connected to a reasonable supply of hot and cold water.
The property must be structurally sound and weatherproof.
Mould and dampness
Each room in the property must be free from mould and damp caused by or related to the building structure.
From 29/3/2023 all power outlets and lighting circuits are to be connected to a required switchboard depending on the property requirements. The switchboard must be fitted with a residual current device (RCD) and safety switches.
Each window in a room that is likely to be used as a bedroom or as a living area must be fitted with curtain/blind that can be opened and closed, can block light, and can provide privacy.
All external windows that are capable of opening, must be able to be set in an open or closed position and have a functioning latch protecting against external entry.
All interior rooms, corridors and hallways must have access to light (whether natural or artificial) that provides a level of illuminance appropriate to the use of the room.
Each room needs to have access to natural light (including borrowed light from an adjoining room) during daylight hours, and artificial light during non-daylight hours.
Each room of bathroom, shower room, toilet and laundry must meet certain ventilation requirements in accordance with the Regulations.
A fixed , energy efficient heater is required in at least the main living area of the rented property. There are certain classifications depending on what Class of building the property is.
Safety Related Activities
There are now safety checks that rental providers must comply with – this includes having a regular service of smoke alarms, gas appliances and electricity checks by a professional and ensuring that the records are kept.
the rental provider must ensure that an electrical safety check of all electric installations, appliances and fittings is conducted every 2 years using a registered electrician. These checks must be recorded and provided to the renter upon request.
If the property contains any gas appliances, fixtures, or fittings there must be a gas safety check conducted every 2 years. These checks must be recorded and provided to the renter upon request.
Every smoke alarm in a rented premise must be correctly installed, be in working condition, and be tested at least once every 12 months. The rental provider must ensure batteries are replaced as required.
The renter must be provided with the information about how to use and test all smoke alarms. The renter is not to tamper with smoke alarms and must report any breakdowns to the rental provider.
Swimming pool/Spa (excludes indoor spa baths that are emptied after each use)
The rental provider must ensure that the swimming pool/spa barrier is in good condition, and if not, must be replaced or repaired as an urgent repair.
Property owners were required to have registered their swimming pools and spas with Council by 1 November 2020 advising the type of swimming pool or spa, installation/construction date and any alterations to the safety barrier.
Owners are required to have their pool safety barriers inspected by a registered Building Surveyor or Building Inspector and certified as being in a safe state of compliance by a due date determined by the date of construction of the pool or spa. Please contact your local council for the compliance dates applicable for your pool/spa.
If the property is in a designated bushfire prone area, a water tank is required for firefighting purposes, and the tank and any connected infrastructure must be maintained.
For more information, please visit the below websites:
For a summary of the key changes, please visit the CAV website, here. (https://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/housing/renting/changes-to-renting-laws/guide-to-rental-law-changes)
For the updated Residential Tenancies Act in full, please visit this website. (https://www.legislation.vic.gov.au/in-force/acts/residential-tenancies-act-1997/100)
During the tenancy
Modifications to the rental property
At their own expense, Renters are now able to make certain modifications to the rental property without the consent of the rental provider (excluding Heritage listed properties).
The Renter will be required to return the property in the same condition as it was at the start of the tenancy, taking into account fair wear and tear.
Without prior notice, the renter can make the following modifications:
- Installation of picture hooks or screws for wall mounts, shelves or brackets on surfaces other than exposed brick or concrete walls.
- Installation of wall anchoring devices to secure furniture on surfaces (other than exposed brick or concrete walls.)
- Installation of LED light globes (that do not require new light fittings).
- Installation of a water efficient shower head (ensuring the original is retained).
- Installation of blind cords/anchors.
- Installation of security lights/cameras that do not impact on the privacy of neighbours, are not hardwired to the property, and can be easily removed.
- Installation of hardware mounted child safety gates on surfaces other than exposed brick or concrete walls.
- Installation of non-permanent window film for reduced heat transfer or privacy.
- Installation of a wireless doorbell.
- Replacement of the curtains (ensuring the originals are retained).
- Installation of adhesive child safety locks on draws and doors.
- Installation of pressure mounted child safety gates.
- Installation of a lock on a letterbox
Rental providers must not unreasonably refuse consent to the below modifications:
- Installation of hardware mounted child safety gates on exposed brick or concrete walls.
- Draughtproofing in homes without open flued gas heating, including installing weather seals, caulking or gap filling around the windows, doors, skirting and floorboards.
- Installation by a qualified person of a hardwired security system (must not impact on the privacy of neighbours).
- Installation of flyscreen’s on doors and windows.
- Installation of a vegetable/herb garden.
- Installation of a secure letterbox.
- Painting of rented premises.
- Modifications to secure external gates in rented premises (that are not multi-unit dwellings).
The rental provider may request that any modifications that are being made, are to be made by a licensed tradesperson.
It is a priority for Hodges to ensure that your rental income is received by the due date in a prompt and regular manner.
Taking legal action against a renter for non-payment is a very rare occurrence, however occasionally circumstances arise that require legal intervention.
Rental is due to be paid by your renter on a nominated date each month as specified in the lease agreement, however in accordance with the Legislation all renters have a 14 day grace period in which to pay rent before legal action can be taken by the landlord.
Notice to Vacate/VCAT
There has recently been major changes to the process for dealing with rent arrears. In most instances’ it is a ‘5 Strike’ process.
If a renter is 14 days late on their rent, they may be given a notice to vacate for unpaid rent. If the renter then pays their rent the notice to vacate will be cancelled. This applies to the first four times of the renter paying their rent late in a 12-month period.
If the renter fails to pay their rent as required on the 5th occasion (5th Strike) in the same 12-month period, then the rental provider may give a notice to vacate and can apply to VCAT for a possession order. VCAT may adjourn the possession application and place the renter on a payment plan to recoup the outstanding arrears.
If the rental remains unpaid following any Notice to Vacate, and remains unpaid until the VCAT hearing, then VCAT may provide an order for possession and allow the eviction proceedings to commence.
For all rental agreements signed after June 2019, a rental provider can only increase the rent for the property every 12 months by providing a minimum of 60 days notice in writing.
Renters can ask Consumer Affairs Victoria to investigate and report on rent increases if they think the increase is too high. This process is called a rent assessment or a rent increase investigation.
It is a requirement to identify the method by which the increase was determined. Your property manager will provide a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) report to assist with this process.
A rent increase during a fixed term rental agreements can only occur if the rental agreement specifies the increase.
End of a tenancy
Notices to Vacate
Renters are required to provide a minimum of 28 days notice of their intention to vacate the rental property, this is on or after the end of their fixed term or periodic tenancy.
A tenancy that ends during a fixed term lease is known as a lease break.
Reletting your property after the renter vacates
If your renter gives notice that they are vacating we will be in contact with you to discuss the reletting of your property, setting the rental rate, photography, marketing and improvements that may be required to the rental property.
Rental Provider wishes to give a Notice to Vacate
A rental provider must give a valid reason to end the rental agreement. There is no longer a ‘No Specified Reason (120 day) notice to vacate.
There is also a limit to the use of a “end of fixed term” notice to vacate. A rental provider may only issue a notice to vacate at the end of the first fixed term of a rental agreement:
- 60 day Notice to Vacate for a less than 6 month agreement,
or, as may be the case
- 90 days Notice to Vacate for more than a 6 month tenancy.
If a rental provider wants to end the rental agreement, they must provide a valid reason, and provide the relevant evidence to accompany the notice.
In most instances, the property is unable to be re-let for a period of 6 months from the time that the Notice is served unless VCAT provides permission, and penalties up to $25,000 an apply.
- The property is being sold – 60 day notice to vacate
- There is a change of use of the property – 60 day notice to vacate
- There is a demolition or major building works planned -60 day notice to vacate
- The rental provider or their family are moving into the property – 60 day notice to vacate