26 September 2023

Comment call for on yearlong rent records

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The Department of Housing has issued a discussion paper aimed at ensuring the frequency of rents remaining annual with the limits being effective.

According to the Department, the paper follows a roundtable hosted by the Minister for Housing, Meaghan Scanlon with peak bodies as well as reports of some landlords not renewing tenancies in order to increase their rents.

“The paper considers tying limits to rental increases to a property rather than individual tenancies, if feedback indicates it is necessary,” the Department said.

It said that earlier this year, laws were passed to bring Queensland into line with New South Wales, South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania and the ACT by limiting rent increases to once per year to assist in stabilising rents.

“However, reports have emerged of some landlords and agents ending leases with tenants in order to increase rents more frequently than once per year,” it said.

“The discussion paper considers a proposal to ensure the intent of the laws are not circumvented, and that renters aren’t unfairly penalised by behaviour aimed at avoiding limits to rent increases.”

Minister for Housing, Meaghan Scanlon said she supported the move as she wanted to ensure the original intent of the laws were respected.

“Not everyone is engaging in these tactics,” Ms Scanlon said, “and I want to acknowledge that the vast majority of agents and landlords do the right thing.”

“Our reforms seek to stabilise rents which will help ensure affordability and certainty for renters in a way that also takes into account the pressures some landlords are facing.”

She said the discussion paper considered a proposal and she had put the idea to stakeholders.

“Queensland’s private rental market is a vitally important part of our overall housing mix, and I want to see that market thrive,” Ms Scanlon said.

She said that would only happen when all players in the market acted fairly and within the letter and spirit of the law.

Consultation on the discussion paper is to close on 11 August and it can be accessed at this PS News link.

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