On March 17, 2022 changes to how the RTA manages bond money and the interest it earns on it were tabled in parliament. This was a surprise to us – we were neither aware nor consulted on them. The changes were tucked away on page 7-13 of this omnibus bill. We will review the proposals over coming days and seek further information.
Key concerns for us are – ensuring we can continue to track what happens to the significant interest, resources and investments generated over many years from tenants’ bonds and that tenants continue to benefit directly from it. Our organisation formed around the centralised collection of tenants’ bonds. This successful campaign has meant the RTA has been able to provide free services to the entire rental sector – lessors, agents and tenants. There was also an agreed principle that tenants would benefit collectively from specialist services through individual tenants giving up the interest on their own money. Remember, bonds are tenants’ money held in trust until the end of a tenancy! These are significant changes which seem to greatly reduce the autonomy of the RTA. We’ll come back to you when we understand more.