Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV) have announced that selected reforms to the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 came into effect on 3 April 2019. All remaining reforms will be fully implemented by July 2020.
The reforms that came into effect on 3 April include suppression of rooming house address details, and a new prescribed agreement for long-term leases.
These may be of interest to some community housing organisations if you are running rooming houses for residents in danger of family violence, or if you are intending to use the new option of running long-term leases.
Suppression of rooming house address details
Rooming house operators can now apply to the Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria to stop the public from seeing the address of the rooming house on the Rooming Housing Register.
The Director will only restrict public access to the address on the register when there are exceptional circumstances. These may include suppressing the address of a rooming house run by:
- a housing agency registered under the Housing Act 1983, or
- a non-government organisation funded to deliver family violence services.
Suppression in these circumstances may be approved to help protect residents threatened by interpersonal or family violence.
Operators and applicants (anyone applying for a rooming house registration to be issued, renewed or transferred) must make their request to the Director in writing. Click here for more information
Long-term leases – new prescribed agreement available
A new prescribed agreement for long-term leases is now available. The agreement includes additional benefits and protections for both rental providers and renters.
For Victorian landlords and tenants seeking security and stability, the new long-term lease agreement provides options for both parties to tailor the terms of the agreement upfront, including rent increases, minor changes to the property and bond top-ups. Use of the new agreement is optional and the standard prescribed tenancy agreement can still be used for long-term leases.
Click here for more information about long-term leases, including the new prescribed long-term tenancy agreement.