Being a Tenant During Covid-19 Stage 4 Restrictions - FAQs
It is our top priority to support our clients, team and community throughout this challenging time.
In order to help you understand the current state of play and make informed property related decisions, we have sourced a series of frequently asked questions for your reference.
What do stage 4 restrictions mean for real estate?
During stage 4 restrictions we are unable to conduct any onsite work, which means our Essendon Real Estate office is closed and our team is working from home. We can only conduct virtual buyer inspections during this time. Please contact our team for more information and virtual tour bookings.
Can I still contact my Property Manager or the Office?
The Real Estate office in Essendon number is still operating as normal, however the most direct way to contact your Property Manager is via email. Please note our office is temporarily closed.
Does this situation change any of my rights as a tenant?
Despite the changing landscape, your rights as a tenant remain the same. Tenants and Landlords must continue to abide by the Residential Tenancies Act 1997. There are measures that the State and Federal Governments may put in place that may relate to your tenancy. We will update this page as often as possible when any new arrangement has been made.
Will routine inspections be taking place?
Face-to-face routine inspections that were due to take place have been replaced using the latest technology and are now performed virtually. Feel free to contact Your Property Manager for more detail on this process should you have any queries.
Can I be evicted if I can’t pay my rent?
New temporary laws have been introduced to help protect Victorian Tenants and Landlords from the impact of the Coronavirus. Tenants and Landlords still need to abide by the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (the Act), and also the COVID-19 Omnibus (Emergency Measures) Act 2020. These new laws apply for 6 months and began on 29th March 2020.
The COVID-19 Omnibus ACT 2020 creates a moratorium on evictions in certain circumstances, and includes provisions to facilitate rent relief (for eligible tenants only), suspensions on rental increases, and establishment of a new dispute resolution process.
These laws also make changes to how the Landlord or Tenant may end the tenancy during this 6 months moratorium period. For more detailed information for tenants on eligibility for reduced rental agreements or ending a tenancy please visit Consumer Affairs Victoria - Information for Tenants and Landlords.
What happens if I have lost my job and need to move out of a fixed term lease?
If you need to vacate the property due to loss of employment or income you should contact your Property Manager who will speak with the Landlord to see if an agreement can be made to end the lease early.
Can I reduce or defer my rental payments?
If you are experiencing financial hardship as a result of the Coronavirus please ensure that you contact your Property Manager as soon as possible. They can guide you through the relevant steps for applying to reduce or defer rental payments – at the approval of the Landlord.
What does this actually mean?
If you are experiencing genuine hardship as a result of the Coronavirus circumstances, then we require you to contact your Property Manager as soon as possible. You should also explore the available options announced by the Government on assistance packages that have been released.
If these options are not enough, you will be asked to complete our Financial Hardship Application, providing more specific details regarding your situation. Once this form and supported documents have been completed, the Landlord will be consulted and they will make the decision.
What is the rent relief package legislated by the State Government?
The Victorian Government has approved a rent relief package that provides funding for tenants who are under financial duress due to Coronavirus impacting their financial situation. This is a one-off grant specifically for tenants to ensure that they can maintain safe, secure and stable accommodation, and is paid directly to the tenant’s agent, lessor or the landlord to contribute to the tenant’s rental payments during this time of financial hardship.