Do the COVID rental restrictions still apply to my property?

Back in March of 2020, a number of temporary changes to our industry were put in place by the Victorian Government.  These adjustments were aimed to assist those who were financially struggling during the pandemic. The changes primarily addressed evictions, rent relief, rental increases and dispute resolution. However, now that we seem to be heading back towards normality, these measures are set to end as of the 28th March 2021.

Both landlords and tenants will find that many of the processes are returning to how they used to be. This will enable a more simple and straight forward management of each property.

So, let’s clarify some things as we move out of the moratorium period and back towards regular practice.

The ban on evictions will be lifted. 

On top of this, the regulations surrounding the grounds upon which a tenant can be evicted have recently been updated. Please head here to read up on the recent updates, or speak to your property manager.

Rental increases are no longer banned.

This means that if the value of your property has increased (as many have in the past year), you will now be able to issue a rent increase notice as of the 28th of March 2021. Rent increases are only able to be issued every 12 months for all leases issued after 19 June 2019.

Tenants must pay back any deferred or unpaid rent.

If a tenant fell behind on payments during this period, or had their rent deferred, a payment plan will need to be followed to pay this rent back to the landlord.

VCAT processes back to normal.

Meaning that the processes for issuing notices, addressing rent arrears and bond disputes, and dealing with evictions are all returning to normal. Some of the requirements for these cases have recently changed. Your property manager will be across these updates, or if you privately manage please see here.

Rent relief grant applications will close on the 28th of March 2021.

These grants were created to assist Victorians who were experiencing financial hardship in response to the pandemic. Click here to find out more information.

If you have any questions surround your rental, please feel free to give us a buzz on (03) 5223 1657 or contact us here and we can help to answer any questions relating to your personal situation.

Check out our next Blog Post here.

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