Historic step forward for renters as Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill 2018 passes through Victorian Parliament

Victoria’s peak tenancy body welcomes the news that the Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill 2018 has tonight passed through Parliament.

The Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill 2018 marks first significant change to the state’s tenancy laws in twenty years.  Sweeping reforms include abolishing ‘no reason’ notices to vacate, subjecting rental properties to minimum property standards that address health and safety concerns, allowing tenants to undertake certain minor modifications, and making it easier to rent with pets.  New protections for victims of family violence are also included.

“This bill is a landmark step forward for legitimising renters as deserving of safety, stability and privacy in their homes,” says Tenants Victoria CEO and Make Renting Fair Campaign Spokesperson, Mark O’Brien.

“Too many renters have been forced to deal with situations that no one should have to face simply because they rent their homes: Sub-standard housing that not only poses physical risk to renters, but adversely affects their emotional wellbeing.  An inability to do the most basic things that make a house feel like home like hang pictures on the walls or enjoy the companionship of a pet.

“Renters have lived in fear of being unfairly evicted from their homes thanks to the legal loophole of ‘no reason’ evictions, often going so far as to avoid exercising their rights for fear of retaliation.”

O’Brien says that the changes included in this Bill will provide greater certainty to the state’s over 1.5 million renters.  “Most importantly, they will give renters the security they need to set down roots and build ties with their local communities which will, in turn, have positive benefits to the economy and society.”

“I would like to thank the Make Renting Fair Coalition of over 70 organisations and its thousands of individual supporters for their ongoing support.

“I would also like to acknowledge the Victorian Government’s leadership and the support of the Greens, Ms Fiona Patten, Dr Rachel Carling-Jenkins and Mr James Purcell in supporting the rental reforms.”

“We look forward to working with the State Government to develop the forthcoming regulations pertaining to this bill.”

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To organise an interview with a spokesperson from Tenants Victoria, please contact Communications Adviser Devon LaSalle on 0447 337 009 or dlasalle[AT]tuv.org.au.