Rental Law Reform in Queensland
New laws for Queensland landlords and tenants came into effect on 1 October 2022.
The new laws will be implemented in phases over a three-year period to ensure that both the Queensland Government and the Queensland renting community have sufficient time to prepare for, understand and adopt these changes.
The new laws are contained in Queensland’s Housing Legislation Amendment Bill 2021.
Stage one of Queensland’s Housing Legislation Amendment Bill 2021 aims to regulate rented properties across Queensland, with a goal to:
- Improve transparency during tenancies and ending lease agreements fairly;
- Increase repair and maintenance obligations on the landlord in light with the staggered introduction of Minimum Housing Standards from 1 September 2023; and
- Make it easier for renters to keep pets.
We will briefly discuss the three main changes, below:
1. Ending Tenancies
Landlords can no longer end a tenancy without a specific reason (without grounds). Ending of a fixed term agreement can be given as a reason for ending a fixed term tenancy. However, this doesn’t apply to periodic agreements which can only be ended using a specific reason under the Act.
2. Minimum Housing Standards
The Minimum Housing Standards will apply to new leases entered from 1 September 2023 and all tenancies from 1 September 2024. Rental premises will need to be weatherproof and structurally sound, and free from pests, damp and mold and all fixtures and fittings needing to be in good repair.
The changes make it easier for tenants to keep pets.
Landlords can only refuse a request to keep a pet on identified reasonable grounds, for example, the Body Corporate has not approved the pet application.
The Landlord’s refusal of a tenant’s request on the grounds that ‘no pets are allowed’ is not enough to comply with the new laws.
If you are a landlord or a tenant who is unsure about what effect these changes will have, we encourage you to contact our office and schedule an appointment with one of our experienced commercial solicitors.