All You Need to Know About the New Home Owners Legislation in Effect September 2023.
As a homeowner, you know that renting out your property can be rewarding but also comes with its challenges. It can be tough managing a property while keeping up with all the legal requirements. However, you must remain up to date with the newest legislation, particularly the minimum housing standards that will come into effect on 1 September 2023. The good news is there is still time to familiarize yourself with these upcoming changes. This blog post will explain the new legislation and its impact on homeowners.
What Are Minimum Housing Standards?
The primary goal of minimum housing standards is to enforce safe and secure rental properties for tenants. These standards will provide clear maintenance obligations for property owners and managers and ensure the functionality of the rental property. All types of rental arrangements, including general tenancies, rooming accommodations, and moveable dwellings, will need to comply with these new standards.
When Do the New Laws Come into Effect?
The minimum housing standards will first become mandatory for new tenancies from 1st September 2023. The following year, from 1 September 2024, all tenancies in Queensland will be required to comply with these new standards. This means that it is never too soon to start preparing your rental property.
What Will Be Required of Homeowners?
Landlords are accountable for the upkeep of their rental properties, and the new legislation is no exception. While the new standards won’t impact rental costs, failure to comply could lead to penalties against landlords. There are various ways landlords can prepare for these new rules, including:
- Be weatherproof and structurally sound;
- Have all included fixtures and fittings (including electrical appliances) be in good repair and not be likely to cause injury through normal use;
- Have functioning locks or latches on all external doors and windows which can be reached without a ladder;
- Be free from vermin, damp and mould (this does not include cases where the vermin, damp or mould has been caused by the tenant/resident);
- Include curtains or other window coverings which provide privacy in rooms where the tenant/resident might reasonably expect it, such as in bedrooms;
- Have adequate plumbing and drainage for the number of people living in the property and be connected to hot and cold water which is suitable for drinking;
- Provide privacy in bathroom areas and have functioning and flushable toilets connected to a sewer, septic tank or other waste disposal system;
- Have a functioning cook-top, if a kitchen is provided;
- Include the necessary fixtures for a functional laundry, other than white goods, if laundry facilities are provided.
The introduction of Minimum Housing Standards are the final phase of a series of rental reforms which have been coming into effect since October 2021 under the Housing Legislation Amendment Act 2021 (HLA Act).
What Can Homeowners Do to Prepare?
The RTA has updated its updated rental law changes webpage where you can find details on the minimum housing standards, including some of the most frequently asked questions. In the coming months, the RTA will host information sessions across Queensland to inform homeowners about this new regulation. There is still plenty of time to ensure your property meets the required standards if you prepare early.
In conclusion, the new minimum housing standards will become mandatory in September 2023. These changes aim to provide tenants with a safe and secure rental property while ensuring landlords are keeping up with their maintenance obligations. Homeowners must remain updated with the changes and prepare their properties accordingly to avoid any penalties. You can always refer to RTA’s updated rental law changes webpage for any information. This is an excellent chance for landlords in Queensland to provide their tenants with a better living environment. So, start preparing early, and make sure your rental property meets the upcoming minimum housing standards.
For any questions regarding your property and how this new legislation might impact is, contact our trusted property management team today.