26 September 2023

Renters advised rent rules are revised

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Consumer and Business Services (CBS) has announced that new property rental agreements have applied from 1 April, allowing new maximum bond amounts.

According to CBS, before the new agreements came into force when a new rental agreement was made the law allowed for the maximum bond amount to be equal to six weeks’ rent if the weekly rent was $250 or more or four weeks’ rent if the weekly rent was less than $250.

CBS has said however that under the new rental agreements applying from 1 April last week, a bond equivalent to six weeks’ rent can only be charged where the weekly rent is $800 or more.

“This means the maximum bond amount can be equal to six weeks rent if the weekly rent is $800 or more or four weeks rent if the weekly rent is less than $800,” CBS said.

“By increasing this threshold, only a four-week bond will be required for most rental properties in SA,” it said.

“This change will reduce the amount of upfront costs for tenants by between $500 and $1,600, depending on the amount of rent they are paying.”

CBS said that along with more affordable rental bonds, it will also ban the practice of rental bidding.

“Landlords will no longer be able to advertise properties with a rent range, put properties up for rent auction, or solicit offers over the advertised rental price,” CBS said

“This reform brings South Australia in line with other Australian jurisdictions which have introduced restrictions on rent bidding,” it said.

“Additionally, where a third party is facilitating tenancy applications, any rating or assessment of a prospective tenant must not be based on an offer of higher rent.”

Further information about the State’s new rental laws can be accessed at this PS News link.

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