Queensland needs to join other states and countries to ensure renters have their rights given teeth!
You might have noticed there’s a housing crisis. Renters have it tough! Rents are going up, considerably more than CPI! Renters are afraid to advocate for themselves for fear of losing their home.
That’s right, their home, not just someones investment property!
Everyone in Queensland deserves to live in a place where they can create a safe, secure and affordable home. During the last two years, Queensland rents have increased at rates well above inflation. With more than 33 per cent of households in Queensland calling a rental home, we need fair, safe and certain renting laws for all Queenslanders.
If your landlord wants to increase your rent above the cost of living increases, there should be a good reason for it.
The Make Renting Fair Alliance is an alliance of community organisations that support progressive reform of state renting laws so that all Queenslanders can make the place they live in their home, whether they rent or own.
The campaign outlines key asks on:
- limits to rent increases (linked to CPI)
- fair bond returns (returned automatically, unless evidence of expenses provided)
- fairer contract terms
- accessible, safer and healthier homes (minor modifications for improved safety and disability accessibility, pre-disclosure of safety risks such as asbestos)
- minor modifications (like hanging pictures or creating gardens)
- improved privacy protections (increase all 24-hour entry notice periods to 48-hours, limit questions on rental application, ensure data is protected)
- the introduction a code of conduct and industry standards for landlords and agents with increased training for property managers.
Energetic Communities is proudly an active member of the Make Renting Fair in Queensland Alliance.
Stage 2 Rental Law Reforms
Energetic Communities recently made a submission to the Queensland Governments Stage 2 Rental Reform.
On the question of comfortable temperatures in rentals, Better Renting research suggests rental homes are often too hot or too cold, while RENEW agrees Queensland renters deserve healthy homes in their submission, demonstrating how renters wellbeing will significantly increase with insulation and save over $500 a year on cooling and heating costs.
We asked the Queensland Government to make renting fair and address the current imbalance of power and agency between tenants and the owners and managers of their homes, to improve rental protections, and join other states in introducing mandatory energy efficiency minimum standards and disclosure into rental tenancy regulations as part of its reforms to the Residential Tenancy and Rooming Accommodation Act (2008) (RTRAA).
Limiting rental increase to once per year mean absolutely nothing if that once is excessive. Most renters understand that rents go up with inflation. The ongoing ability of property managers to raise rents and not renew fixed term leases, however, are both cause for considerable concern. The rent rises in recent years demonstrate this. The recent federal budget increase in rent assistance, while welcome, is less than the artificial rent increases experienced by many tenants. Interest rate increases are not a justification for property managers to increase rents significantly, especially not at much larger increases of 20% or more in a housing crisis, let alone 60% or 385%, which are clearly opportunistic price-gouging and demonstrate the urgent need for significant strengthening of rental controls.
It was made clear at the recent Energy Efficiency Council annual conference that there is significant support from government, industry, and household sectors for improving equity in housing and energy, especially as education and incentives are proving inadequate. Energy efficiency is a real opportunity to improve people’s homes, affordability, and action on climate change!
Renters should be able to access these opportunities too. Mandating energy efficiency minimum standards and disclosure is increasingly seen as the only realistic option to get over the reality of the private residential housing market.
Energetic Communities Association acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and pay our respect to Elders past, present and future. We recognise that we live on stolen land and that sovereignty was never ceded.