New regulations have been introduced in Queensland to assist tenants who are in financial distress due to the impact of COVID-19 and who cannot meet their rent commitments. Renters may apply for a General Tenancy COVID-19 Variation Agreement. If you are having difficulty paying your rent, the Australian Government has expanded financial support entitlements. Make sure you have applied to Centrelink for the COVID-19 income support.
Any variation to a tenancy agreement needs to be negotiated with the landlord. The original lease obligations remain in place. Landlords may agree to a temporary rent reduction with the deferral of rent to be repaid to the landlord at a future point in time. These new regulations require renters to provide a specific Show Cause Notice that compels the tenant to communicate their circumstances, including documentary evidence to show how they have been impacted by COVID-19.
The new regulations also set out circumstances where entry to the property may be limited due to the tenants health circumstances or their vulnerability.
Importantly, if the tenant or the household is not affected by COVID-19 the standard tenancy rules and obligations prevail. For more information about the new COVID-19 Queensland Regulations for Renters – click here.
Funding is available for Queenslanders who have lost their job due to the impacts of COVID-19 and who do not have access to other financial assistance. The COVID-19 Rental Grant is a one-off payment of up to 4 weeks rent (maximum of $2000) available to those affected by the COVID-19. For more information visit the Queensland Government web site Apply for COVID-19 Rental Grant.
Information about COVID-19 support, the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) & other Government Housing Assistance
In addition to the COVID-19 Rental Grant, there are other rental support programs that can help you supplement your income and help you reduce your rental costs. This includes the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS). For more information about these programs visit:
If your answer is ‘YES‘, then you should check out the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS). This fantastic government funded program helps tens of thousands of people gain access to high quality properties including houses, duplexes, townhouses and apartments. To learn more about whether you are eligible for NRAS, please click the on-line eligibility checklist below.
If you wish to rent an NRAS property, strict criteria apply to your rental application. Applications must be completed with all supporting information before they can be assessed. Before you submit your application, please ensure you have:
The Queensland State Government’s Special COVID-19 measures for residential tenants and property owners passed in Parliament on Wednesday 22 April 2020. The legislation and associated regulations introduce special measures that apply during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new rules only apply to renters and their households directly impacted by COVID-19. Tenants must provide RTA Show Cause Notice in accordance with the legislation. A Residential Tenancies Practice Guide for COVID-19 will be released shortly.
The new COVID-19 measures include:
Importantly, if the tenant or the household is not affected by COVID-19 the standard tenancy rules and obligations prevail. For more information about the new COVID-19 Queensland Regulations for Landlords – click here.
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