What Are Your Responsibilities as a Landlord?

Feb 9, 2020 | Landlord Advice

If you own a property that you rent, lease, or utilise to supply lodging, you are the landlord, whilst the individual or people staying in your residence are your tenants.

As a property owner, you want to feel safe in the fact that your financial investment property is being cared for sensibly and within all relevant legal guidelines. 

This guide should be able to provide some guidance as to what your responsibilities are as a Landlord and how to best manage those responsibilities.

The main obligation of you as an owner is to ensure that no injury or damages are caused to your occupants, neighbours, or to the general public as a result of you being negligent in your responsibility.

In some scenarios, landlords will elect to manage their residential property themselves– however, a large percentage decide to put management in the hands of an experienced property management professional, with this number likely to increase as their property portfolio increases.

No matter what you select to do, you as the property owner do have some commitments which you do need to follow. We intended to describe a few of the crucial commitments you have as a proprietor in the hopes that it clarifies your duties.

In Queensland, we have regulations (Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act– RTRA Act) that establishes just how a Landlord is required to behave.

There are certain regulations that specify that landlords have a duty to ensure that a leased out property is secure with all inclusions, fittings and fixtures safe for occupancy.

Australian Landlord Guidelines 

As well as ensuring the safety of your property you also have a number of extra responsibilities including:

  • Keep the structure and the outside of your house in good working order.
  • Ensure that the residential property is fit to reside in and remains in great condition.
  • Make sure that all of the necessary services like electricity, water and gas are all working appropriately and that repair work is done as soon as problems arise.
  • Ensuring security is at a sensible standard.

You also need to make sure the all tenancy agreement stipulations are adhered to.

Obligations at the Beginning of Tenancy

When a brand-new occupant moves into your property, you have a duty to check the property and to complete an entry condition report in order acknowledge the current state of the property for the benefit of both the tenant and landlord.

You will also need to collect a bond which will be held by the Residential Tenants Authority (RTA).

The bond serves the purpose of providing security during the tenancy and cannot be accessed by landlord or tenant without the agreement of both sides or following of appropriate procedures.

You need to provide a written statement to the occupant which lays out the conditions of the tenancy.

You cannot charge any costs to your occupant for the cost of producing this arrangement

Interference with your tenant’s use and satisfaction of the property, regardless of being the owner of a home, you can’t enter the property whenever you wish.

Your tenant has the right to use the leased property as a home and to be left in peace– this implies that if you do want to enter your home, you should supply advance notice; you can not just walk around to your property and enter it yourself, even if you have a key.

Your tenant is an individual who has the sole right to the use of your property.

Obligations at the End of Tenancy

Sometimes you will desire to end an occupancy, whether because you wish to move into the property yourself, looking to sell or due to issues with your renters.

No matter the case, your occupants have the requirement to leave the property in the same condition that they entered the property in except for regular and reasonable wear and tear.

The tenant is required to provide you with an exit condition report, at which time you are required to without delay examine your property and to provide a final copy of this report to your renter if you do not agree with their report.

Once again, please consider how a property management business can take the obligation of this on for you and make sure that these obligations are met on your behalf.

If your residential or commercial property has actually been left unclean or in a condition that is inappropriate provided the condition of your property at the start of the tenancy, then you can keep a suitable portion of the bond required to bring the property back to it’s original standard.

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