The rental moratorium is back. But this week, SBS reported on the stress some tenants are experiencing after being asked to leave their homes.
If you’re a casual and/or gig economy worker, you’ll understand how important the moratorium is to protect tenants and the broader community during lockdown.
However, the rules have left some people confused, so it’s also important to know your rights and responsibilities.
Here is a quick breakdown for tenants.
What you can do
- You can stay in your property, even if you can’t afford to pay the rent
Right now, there is a 60 day freeze on evictions. This means that you will be protected from eviction during the moratorium period commencing from 14 July and finishing at the end of 11 September 2021.
However, this doesn’t mean that you can stay in your property no matter what. A landlord may continue to seek a termination in other circumstances including:
- sale of premises
- illegal use of premises
- damage to property
- end of fixed term agreement
Click here to see whether you’re eligible for protection against eviction.
- You can ask your landlord for a rent reduction
Though they get a bad rap most of the time, landlords can very understanding, especially during these crazy, challenging times.
If you’re not exactly eligible for protection against eviction, but you’re still experiencing financial hardship due to the pandemic, consider reaching out to your landlord to ask for a rent reduction.
Remember to be polite and to make a strong case for yourself. Briefly outline your work situation and the reason why you need a rental reduction. Also consider mentioning ways in which you’ve tried to be a good tenant (i.e. keeping the place clean and tidy, paying on time etc.)
What you shouldn’t do
- Stop paying for no reason
Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face. In 60 days’ time (or less), you might find yourself in a sticky situation. If you like your place and you don’t what the chaos of having to find a new property in a pandemic, try to meet your landlord halfway.
- Demand a rental reduction
Be tactful! Most landlords are experiencing decreased income from all sources while trying to pay off a mortgage, so try to be diplomatic and even-tempered in your approach.
Where to look if your lease is up
If you’ve reached the end of your fixed term agreement and you’re desperate to find an affordable property fast, consider searching for properties on Instarent. Since landlords don’t have to pay an agent fee, they can afford to give you a better price.
Stay safe and stay tuned for more updates from Instarent.