Have you had your say on the future of renting in Queensland? Remember, the closing date for feedback is 30 November 2018.
Property owners and renters are being invited to have their say as the State Government plans to overhaul 40-year-old renting laws.
The review is looking at how to make it easier for renters to have pets and have repairs made sooner, as well as giving property owners greater power to charge for repairs not covered by rental bonds.
Queensland has one of the highest proportions of rentals in Australia, with more than a third of all households renting.
Many residents are renting longer, with 43 per cent of Queensland tenants renting for more than 10 years.
Housing Minister Mick de Brenni said “mum and dad” property investors had nothing to worry about.
“These tenancy laws are ripe for reform,” he said.
“So what we really want to get to is the nub of how we can make renting fairer for everybody,” he said.
‘Pets are part of our families’: Housing Minister
Mr de Brenni said he has heard from many Queenslanders they would like more access to having a pet in rental property.
“Pets are part of our families,” he said.
“Australians have one of the highest rates of pet ownership in the world.
In fact 62 per cent of households across the state, have a pet. But when it comes to rental properties it is only 10 per cent,” he said.
“In some other jurisdictions across the country, they have established a regime where we can make easier arrangements between the landlord and the tenant to agree on having a pet.”
Every tenant in Victoria will soon have the right to have a pet in their rental property under reforms to the state’s tenancy rules which passed in September.
While landlords will still need to provide consent, they will only be able to refuse in certain circumstances.
The onus will be on the landlord to get approval to refuse consent to a pet, once they have received the request from the renter.
Maintenance issues and invasive inspections: renters
Maintenance issues like leaky taps and broken windows being addressed in a timely matter were another gripe that renters have raised.
Mr de Brenni said it was important that tenants enjoyed a decent standard of living and that landlords had well-managed properties.
“Many tenants have raised with me that it is difficult to hang your kids’ school photos or paintings on the wall in rental properties,” he said.
“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.
“Tenants tell us that they feel it’s difficult to feel like they have privacy with ongoing inspections.”
Deputy Premier Jackie Trad said the reforms were long overdue, and in response to increasing densification and population growth.
“In South Brisbane alone, we have seen a 123 per cent increase in the number of rental properties coming onto the market,” she said.
Ms Trad said 60 per cent of households in South Brisbane were rentals, with half the renters in apartments.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the state needed contemporary residential tenancy laws.
“The last full-scale review and changes to regulations dates back to the 1970s. It is well and truly time for another now,” she said.
There is an online survey open for public comment and submissions to the department will close on Friday 30th November.