26 September 2023

New RTA guide to resolve rentals

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The Residential Tenancies Authority has announced new measures to help tenants and rental property owners work together during COVID-19.

The Authority has produced the Residential Tenancies Practice Guide providing guidance to tenants and property owners on negotiating arrangements for residential tenancy agreements, including rooming accommodation agreements for people impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Authority said the guide provided information on how to determine if a tenancy had been impacted by COVID-19; how and when leases could end; entry provisions; special considerations for vulnerable renters; and the steps for negotiating variations to residential tenancy agreements, including rent adjustments.

“In addition, the guide sets out the steps for the mandatory conciliation process, facilitated by the Residential Tenancies Authority, for when parties are unable to reach agreement,” the Authority said.

“It also contains information about financial relief and assistance for tenants, property owners and property managers.”

It said tenants, property owners and property managers were encouraged to discuss any impacts from the COVID-19 emergency and be understanding and reasonable in their dealings with each other.

“If neither party is significantly impacted by COVID-19, they must continue to meet their obligations under the tenancy agreement and Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008, which includes the payment of rent,” the Authority said.

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