Residential tenancy changes during the COVID-19 emergency period
A number of changes have been made to residential tenancies in Tasmania under the COVID-19 Disease (Emergency Provisions) Act 2020.
- Temporary suspension of evictions in most circumstances;
- Immediate halt to any increases in rent;
- Ability to reduce rent by mutual agreement;
- Applications to break a lease due to severe hardship;
- Limited property inspections;
- Delays in evictions due to rent in arrears;
- Minor changes to responsibility for cleanliness and damage if the tenant is unable to do so due to COVID-19.
The Tasmanian Government has extended the COVID-19 pandemic emergency period to 30 September 2020. This means some protections initially put in place for residential tenants during the pandemic, and due to expire on 30 June 2020, are now extended for a further 90 days. This timing will bring Tasmania into line with the expiry of protections in most other states and territories.
See the Consumer, Building and Occupational Services (CBOS) website for more information.
COVID-19 Rent Relief Fund
A COVID-19 Rent Relief Fund has been established to assist tenants suffering from extreme hardship.
The relief payment value will be either:
- the total of four weeks rent, to a maximum of $2000, OR
- the amount a tenant and owner have agreed to as a rent reduction.
IMPORTANT: the value will be whichever is the lesser amount.
The payment can only be applied once during this period.
The fund is available from 25 May 2020 until 30 September 2020.
For more information, go to the Communities Tasmania website.