New Queensland Rental Laws: What’s Changed?

The Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) has published new and updated forms for general tenancies and rooming accommodation.

This follows amendments to the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 (RTRA Act) after the Queensland Government’s Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2024 (RTRAOLA Act) became law on 6 June 2024.

While the new tenancy legislation has been made law, it’s important to remember that not all changes commence immediately.

A number of reforms will commence on the date of assent, 6 June 2024. Other reforms will commence on the date of proclamation, on a date to be advised.

The reforms include changes to rent increase frequency limits, bans rent bidding and introduces new requirements to lodge a bond with the RTA as well as to provide the date of the last rent increase on a tenancy or rooming accommodation agreement, in addition to other changes to Queensland’s tenancy laws.

Rental law changes commencing on 6 June 2024 include:

  • banning all forms of rent bidding and limiting rent increases to once every 12 months attached to the property rather than the tenancy – written agreements must state the date of the last rent increase
  • limits to rent in advance now apply. At the tenancy application stage, this is now capped at one month for fixed-term general tenancies and two weeks for rooming accommodation, moveable dwellings or periodic tenancies. However, once a tenancy has been established, a tenant may offer to pay and a property manager/owner may accept more rent in advance
  • new requirements for a property manager/owner to provide evidence of the date of the last rent increase in writing within 14 days, if requested by the tenant
  • rooming accommodation must be offered at a fixed price and where a bond is taken for any agreement including rooming accommodation – it must be lodged within 10 days with the RTA
  • new grounds for entry to rooming accommodation to install, maintain or repair smoke alarms, and greater clarity on ending short tenancy agreements (moveable dwellings)
  • new ability for the RTA to release a bond refund as per the original request following a bond matter being dismissed or withdrawn at QCAT
  • changes to the bond refund process where a commercial bond loan supplier is involved
  • Heads of Power are established (for later implementation) for a portable bonds scheme, a sector code of conduct, and guidelines for tenants to request modifications aimed at enhancing safety, security, and accessibility within a property
  • new offences and increased penalty provisions to allow the RTA to take greater enforcement action
  • changes to the way goods left behind at a property must be dealt with
  • other general changes including amendments to terminology and expansion of confidentiality requirements for domestic and family violence.

 

 

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