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Please send your photos by the end of the month to enter our competition.
In August the Hon Michael de Brenni MP, introduced the Housing Legislation (Building Better Futures) Amendment Bill 2017 into the Queensland Parliament. The bill includes detailed amendments to the Manufactured Homes (Residential Parks) Act 2003 to increase transparency in the relationships between park owners, staff and home owners and to strengthen consumer protections and provide more security to home owners.
Key changes include:
Tenants Queensland supports the changes being proposed and wants to see the changes become law. Before the bill can be passed by parliament it must be considered by the Public Works and Utilities Committee. This parliamentary committee is currently taking submissions from the public until 28 August. They will report on their findings by 28 September.
TQ encourages you to make a submission to the parliamentary committee to help support the changes and ensure they become law. Just a few short comments about how you think the changes will impact on residents will help.
You can find out more about the proposed changes and how to make a submission here: https://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/work-of-committees/committees/TUC/inquiries/current-inquiries/I48HsngBetterFutures
In addition to supporting the proposed changes TQ will be advocating for additional protections for residents of manufactured home parks, in particular introducing a licensing system and standards for operators of park sites.
The condition of rental properties in Queensland can often be very poor – especially those that are ‘affordable’ . Although the law says properties must be “in good repair” and “fit to live in” it is not always clear what that means. There are many reasons why tenants might be reluctant to ask an agent for repairs – especially if they have a short lease or are worried about being unfairly evicted. Often a tenant will not pursue repairs because they don’t want to ‘rock the boat’, resulting in problems being inherited by consecutive tenants.
The state government is proposing to make changes to the Residential Tenancy and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 (RTRAA) so that, in the future, rental properties will have to meet defined minimum standards before being listed for rent. Minimum standards will make it easier for tenants and lessors to know what is expected.
TQ welcomes today’s introduction of the Housing Legislation (Building Better Futures) Bill 2017 into the Queensland parliament by Housing Minister, the Hon Mick de Brenni. The Bill will amend the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 to allow for the introduction of minimum housing standards in rental properties. The standards will be set out in Regulation and developed through a process of consultation.
The poor quality of some properties is an on-going issue for Queensland renters. The changes will help protect the most vulnerable, often pushed into the margins of the market and reluctant to seek repairs for fear of losing their tenure, from living in substandard and unsafe housing.
The Bill’s introduction is a big step forward but there is still a lot of work to be done. TQ looks forward to participating in the consultation to develop the standards. TQ will also lobby for additional reforms, in particular to address the lack of tenure security.
On Monday the Premier, the Hon Anastasia Palaszczuk announced the government’s 10 year Housing Strategy providing an investment of $1.8B over that time.
The Strategy’s three year Action Plan states that ‘people living in the private rental market will have better consumer protection and housing stability through legislative and policy reforms’. This mean a legislative review of Queensland tenancy laws will take place soon. It is likely to focus on security of tenure and standards in rental properties. We’ll keep you updated as we learn more. Rest assured, we’ll be enthusiastically supporting the Strategy’s aim of developing a more contemporary legislative framework!
Changes to the Manufactured Homes legislation and Retirement Villages, work commenced some years ago are likely to be finalised in the near future.
Today Housing Minister Mick de Brenni helped Tenants Queensland launch the first ever Rental Vulnerability Index (RVI), a tool which allows you to see how many vulnerable renters there are in any postcode area in Queensland.
The RVI is more than just a measure of affordability; it is a look into who lives in the local rental housing and what sort of other vulnerabilities they might experience. It combines 13 data sources, each of which individually expose a potential to experience a housing problem, into one measure of overall rental vulnerability.
Using the interactive map, you can identify not just the RVI for each Queensland postcode area, you can also see the statistics on each of those 13 indicators.
This RVI has been developed as primarily as a service planning tool for tenant advisory services – to ensure that need for services align with demand and if not to reach out to the most vulnerable tenants. However, it will have applicability for a much broader range of service providers, policy maker and planners.
Last Thursday CHOICE, the National Association of Tenants’ Organisations (NATO) and National Shelter called for governments to prioritise rental security and quality issues, not just housing affordability. This followed the release of Unsettled, Life in Australia’s Private Rental Market, the results of a national survey by the same groups, in which widespread fear and discrimination was reported by thousands of Australians.
Key findings from Unsettled were:
For those who rent, this was no surprise but media across the country picked up the story with coverage on
The AHURI Homelessness and housing solutions conference is coming to Brisbane, 31st March 2017. At this conference, the Honourable Mick de Brenni (Queensland’s Minister for Housing and Public Works) will outline the key reforms from the upcoming ten-year Queensland housing strategy.
The Minister said the new strategy is aimed at providing a pathway for people into independent accommodation wherever possible, whether that be new affordable housing, the private rental market or home ownership.
Tenants Queensland will be out and about in February and March at upcoming University orientation and market days.
Come along, say “Hi” and get the low down on your rights and responsibilities as renters.
You can catch us at:
See you there!
Established in 1986, Tenants Queensland (TQ) is a specialist statewide community and legal service providing free tenancy law advisory services for residential tenants. TQ seeks to protect and improve the rights of all people who rent their home in Queensland including those who live in marginal tenures such as caravan parks and boarding houses.
TQ provides a range of tenancy information and advocacy services including a statewide telephone advice service, tenancy and legal casework for renters, tenancy publications, a tenancy law training program and research and policy development in relation to tenancy law issues. TQ has been at the forefront of all tenancy law reform since our establishment.
In September 2015, TQ was awarded the tender to deliver the new Statewide Tenant Advice and Referral Service (QSTARS) program across Queensland. As the lead provider, TQ is working with seven partner organisations to build and deliver this new and exciting program.