Frequently Asked Questions When Renting

 

Here we list our most frequently asked questions on renting in Australia. If you still have a query, don’t hesitate to contact one of our property managers who can help you with your personal circumstance. 

What fees and costs will I need to cover? 

Holding deposit 

In Australia, tenants may be required to pay what is called a holding deposit, which gives you the choice to enter a rental agreement for that property. 

Bond amount 

A bond amount of up to four weeks rent is collected at the start of the tenancy and held in trust. In the event that you fall into rental arrears, are responsible for damage to the property, or leave the property in a dirty or unkempt condition your landlord can make a claim against the bond. At the end of your lease, if the property has only sustained reasonable wear and tear the full bond amount will be returned to you. 

Rent in advance 

You may be required to pay up to two weeks of your rent in advance upon the start of your tenancy. 

How do I pay my rent? 

Each Harcourts office will have a different system for rent collection which can be found within your tenancy agreement. There may be several payment methods available to you, so check with your property manager to discuss your preferred payment method. 

If for whatever reason you feel you may be late with your rental payment, please notify your property manager as soon as possible. 

What types of tenancy agreements are there? 

There are two types of tenancy agreements, fixed term and periodic. 

Fixed term 

Fixed term tenancies are for a set period of time, with a defined start and end date. Usually six to 12 months. Fixed tenancies can’t be terminated by either party unless each party agrees. 

Periodic 

Periodic tenancies can simply be terminated by notice. As a tenant, you must provide your landlord/property manager 21 days written notice of your decision to terminate the lease. Your landlord must provide you with notice which varies depending on circumstance: 

  • 42 days if they or any of their family require the property for their own use 
  • 42 days if the property has been sold 
  • 90 days for any other reason 
  • Up to 4 days should be added to the above to provide for service of the notice 

What happens at the end of a lease? 

You will find the expiry date of your fixed term tenancy within your tenancy agreement. Your property manager will be in contact with you well before this date to ask if you would like to renew the tenancy agreement for a specified period of time as agreed between you and the landlord. If this date passes without renewing your fixed term tenancy agreement, then your agreement becomes a periodic tenancy agreement. 

You can also request a lease renewal from the landlord or property manager before the expiry of your tenancy agreement. The owner of the property has the right to renew the lease, let arrangements continue under the terms of the original lease or issue the appropriate notice requesting that you vacate the property. 

 

What if I need to end my lease early? 

In the event that a suitable tenant cannot be found before you plan to break your lease, you will be responsible for all reasonable costs incurred by the landlord to find a suitable replacement tenant.  

You will also need to continue to pay rent until a new tenant enters into a tenancy agreement. Both you and your landlord/property manager are able to look for a tenant, but any suitable tenant found must follow the correct legal processes when entering into a new tenancy agreement. 

What happens if the property I am renting is sold? 

The owner of the property has the right to sell the property regardless of the lease type. However, as a tenant you have the right to remain in the property for the duration of your fixed term rental agreement or for 42 days from the date of notice of your periodic rental agreement. 

In the event you do have to relocate, we are more than happy to work with you to find a new rental property that will suit your needs.   

If you have any questions that are not covered here, please feel free to get in touch with your local Harcourts property manager. 

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