Presentation on theme: "Tenants’ Union of Tasmania Inc. Lesson Two Beginning a Tenancy."— Presentation transcript:
Tenants’ Union of Tasmania Inc. Lesson Two Beginning a Tenancy
Bond/ Security Deposit The Bond provides financial protection for the property owner if the tenant/s do not pay rent, or if they cause damage to the property during the tenancy. Payable at the beginning of the tenancy No more than the equivalent of 4 weeks rent No more than one bond per property Tenant must be provided with a condition report
Bond lodgement As of 1 July 2009, all bonds must be lodged with the Rental Deposit Authority (RDA). The Landlord is not allowed to hold the Bond themselves. Tenants renting directly from the property owner should pay their Bond directly to the RDA Tenants renting through an Agent should pay their bond to the agent who will make the payment to the RDA
A Bond Lodgement Form (provided by the owner/ agent) must be lodged together with the Bond Bond payments can be made to the RDA (MyBond) through Service Tasmania or posted directly to the RDA mailing address Owners must apply to the RDA if they wish to retain a proportion of the Bond Bond lodgement
The tenant should keep their bond receipt safe as they will need it to claim back their bond at the end of the tenancy. They may also need to show a copy of the receipt to the landlord prior to taking possession of the property.
Condition reports When a bond is paid by the tenant, the tenant must be provided with a property condition report. The condition report provides proof of the condition of the property when the tenant moved in – providing protection for both the tenant and the landlord. It can be drawn upon as evidence in any Bond disputes where the condition of the property is a factor.
Condition reports The landlord must provide the tenant with two completed copies of the condition report. The tenant has 2 days to review and complete the condition report noting any disagreements and return one copy to the landlord. The tenant should take particular care to note damage or wear to floors, walls, ceiling, window coverings, doors and windows. The tenant can also take date stamped photographs as evidence. The tenant can reasonably assume that all services/ items in the property are functioning unless advised otherwise.
Recent Amendments to the Act have included the introduction of Minimum Standards for rental properties in Tasmania. These will be introduced gradually over the next three years until Under the new standards, all tenanted properties must be: Weatherproof and structurally sound; Clean and in good repair; Equipped with a bathroom and toilet; Serviced with a kitchen sink, hotplates and an oven (which can be a microwave); Supplied with electricity and one fixed form of heating; Provided with curtains (except Housing Tas houses); Adequately ventilated. Minimum Standards
Money other than rent The owner/ agent must not ask for any monies to be paid at the beginning of the lease other than: Bond (up to = of 4 weeks rent) Rent in advance (up to 4 weeks) A holding fee This means that a tenant can not be charged for viewing a property, applying for a property or any other charges by the landlord or agent.
Water Meters During the tenancy the owner/agent may ask the tenant to pay water charges. The Act specifies the following conditions: Water Usage charge only Only if the property has a separate meter The tenant may request a copy of that section of the original bill showing the usage charge. A tenant is not required to pay the fixed charges of a water bill. The Tenants Union recommends that a reading of the water meter be done at the commencement of a tenancy before any water is consumed. A date stamped photo of the meter showing the figures is ideal.