More Tenancy Act Updates - Bonds and Abandonment
The Residential Tenancy Act has had a little shake up. We talked about new requirements for smoke alarms and insulation in our last blog. Now we'll introduce you to some other changes on the way, which are good news for both property owners and tenants. See details below!
New bond forms and payment options
Landlords can now pay bonds online at the Tenancy Services website. No more cheques to worry about, but you will still need to scan and upload the bond form to Tenancy Services.
Also, there's a new 'additional tenants' bond form that lets you capture multiple tenants' names, signatures and their portion of the bond.
Property Investors who work with a Rentex property manager or use our casual letting service don't have to worry about bond lodgement. We gather the money - cash or EFTPOS - then forward it with the appropriate signed bond lodgement form to Tenancy Services. A copy of the form is given to the property investor and we also keep a copy of the form, just in case.
TIP: Bonds must be lodged within 23 days of receiving the tenant's payment.
Tenancy abandonment process
Sometimes tenants leave a property with rent owning and without giving notice. This is called abandonment. Changes to the Residential Tenancy Act will soon make it easier and less time-consuming for a landlord to regain possession of their rental property after the property has been abandoned.
With the new proposed process, inspection notice requirements are reduced and landlord applications to the Tenancy Tribunal for possession of the property will be fast-tracked and completed within 10 days. The tenancy adjudicator will make a decision based on evidence provided by the landlord. The landlord doesn't need to be present. This change is expected to come into effect on 1 July.
"The final change reduces the time it takes to confirm abandoned tenancies. The current process can take up to six weeks, leaving a house empty and a landlord losing weeks of rental income. The Bill creates a fast-tracked, 10-day process enabling the re-tenanting of properties where a tenant has no intention of returning."
While we've never had an abandonment case involving a tenant that we selected, our property managers have experience with sorting out abandonment problems, so we're pleased with this change. It's great when a troublesome situation becomes easier to remedy. From everyone's point of view, the objective is getting the property back into the rental market as quickly as possible.
TIP: If paying rent becomes difficult, tenants should proactively discuss the problem with their property manager or landlord. History of abandonment can make it significantly harder for tenants to rent property in the future. Likewise, landlords who use our casual letting service can seek advice from a Rentex property manager if they are concerned about a tenant's financial situation.
Did you know?
Rentex provides a cost effective 'find a tenant' service (aka 'casual letting') for landlords who choose to manage their own properties. This service includes advertising and discounted rates unavailable to private landlords. Find out more about this service.
Having problems with rental arrears or confused about tenancy bonds?
We can help you get your rental property back on track. Talk to Rentex about our property management and find-a-tenant services.
Call us on 0800 RENTEX (0800 736 839). We'd love to help.
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The Residential Tenancy Act has had a little shake up. We talked about new requirements for smoke alarms and insulation in our last blog. Now we'll introduce you to some other changes on the way, which are good news for both property owners and tenants. See details below! Read More