26 September 2023

Bidding to pay for rent soon to be illegal

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Bidding to pay rent is to be made illegal across the State from this weekend (17 December) to ensure affordability for people seeking rental accommodation in a time when high costs of living are already imposing pressures.

Announced by Premier Dominic Perrottet, the outlawing of solicited rent bidding – the practice where a landlord or agent invites, suggests or asks prospective tenants to increase their offer of rent for a property in order to secure it – is to be made by changes to regulations under the Property and Stock Agents Act 2002.

Mr Perrottet said that by banning rent bidding prospective tenants would have a fair chance to secure housing in a tight rental property market.

“It’s time to put an end to this practice and give more people security and certainty so they can plan for their future,” Mr Perrottet said.

“The search for a rental property is tough enough without it turning into a bidding war that pushes people beyond their comfort level,” he said.

“An advertised rental fee should be just that and we will take action to ensure rental bidding is outlawed.”

Mr Perrottet said the new regulations would apply to all new listings from Saturday.

Minister for Fair Trading, Victor Dominello said the reforms to regulations struck the right balance between the interests of renters, landlords and real estate agents.

“It can be very distressing for prospective tenants who have submitted a rental application only to be told to increase their offer to improve their prospects of securing a property,” Mr Dominello said.

“From this weekend, agents will be prohibited from inducing a prospective tenant to offer an amount higher than that advertised for the property,” he said.

“Further, real estate agents cannot advertise a property unless it specifies the rent payable for the property.”

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