Landlords given more rights in SA

Landlords given more rights in SA

Posted on Thursday, November 01 2012 at 1:11 PM

New legislation introduced in South Australia gives landlords more rights and possibly less bills to pay.

Under changes to
the Residential Tenancies Act 1995,
tenants will be responsible for water usage charges, where there’s no

Landlords can also
ask for an additional week’s rent in bond if the tenant wants to have a pet on
the property.

As well as that,
problems with rental arrears will be slightly easier to deal with. Landlords
can now apply directly to the tribunal for vacant possession of a property for
rent arrears, without serving the tenant with a breach of notice, provided they’ve
already served the tenant with two valid breach notices for rent arrears in the
preceding 12 months.

Minister for
Business Services and Consumers John Rau says the changes are designed to
provide better clarity to residential tenants, landlords, rooming house
residents, proprietors and residents of lifestyle villages.

“The Residential Tenancies Act 1995 is an old piece of legislation that requires updating
to reflect the changes that have occurred in the sector over the last 15
years,” Rau says.

“The development
of this legislation has involved a lengthy review process and required careful
consideration and balancing the needs of landlords and tenants alike.”

Tenants also
benefit, according to Rau. For example, rent under a fixed-term tenancy won’t
be able to be increased within 12 months of the rent being fixed or last

Landlords must
now allow tenants to pay their rent by at least one method that isn’t cash or
via a fee-charging third party, such as a property manager.

Landlords are
also now responsible for tenants’ reasonable losses, providing the losses are a
result of a failure to repair.

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