New rental laws
New rental laws came into effect from 29 March, 2021.
While the renter’s responsibilities described on this page largely remain the same, there are a few changes.
A breach of duty notice is a formal notice from the rental provider (landlord) that alleges you have breached your duty and requests you to stop ‘breaching your duty’ as a renter and/or pay compensation. A breach of duty notice can be challenged, but if this is not successful it may lead to a compliance order, or notice to vacate if there have been several breaches of the same duty. Remember, such a notice is an allegation and can be disputed, but should be taken seriously and advice sought.
The new laws have made several minor changes to breach of duty notices that can be given to renters:
- A breach of duty notice for nuisance is now a 7-day notice rather than a common 14-day period
- Refusing entry in relation to entries if the property is for sale (including open inspections), and entry where the rental provider has a reasonable belief the renter is not complying with their duties or the rental agreement, is a 3-day notice
- Renters now have a specific duty not to interfere with certain safety devices and ensure they comply with safety requirements and obligations, as set out in the standard form lease. This includes reporting if a smoke alarm is not working as soon as practicable and obtaining appropriate permits for use of a relocatable pool. For more details, see Residential Tenancies Regulations 2021, Schedule 3