Fairer fees and charges

The Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2024 received Assent on 6 June 2024. Changes to the law will come into effect in stages. The 'fairer fees and charges' reforms will commence on a date to be fixed by Proclamation to give the sector time to prepare for implementation. Current rental laws apply until the changes come into effect.

Read more about changes to Queensland’s rental laws.

Fee-free option to pay rent

Under the current laws, some renters are required to pay rent using payment options that either aren’t convenient or incur costs in addition to bank fees or other account fees that are usually payable for transactions.

When the reforms commence, renters will have a fee-free option to pay rent that is reasonably available. This reform will make paying rent fairer, more affordable and more convenient. It will commence on a date to be fixed by Proclamation.

Disclosure of financial benefits

Some rental property owners or property managers offer rent payment methods that give them a financial incentive.

When the reforms commence, rental property owners and property managers will need to declare any financial benefits they may receive from a renter using a particular payment method. This change makes fees more transparent.

This reform will commence on a date to be fixed by Proclamation.

Provide renters with utility bills promptly

Rental property owners can pass on some service charges to renters, such as for water consumption, if certain criteria are met. Under current rental laws, there is no set timeframe for providing these charges to renters for payment.

Some renters receive multiple bills at once, often when their tenancy ends, which can be a large and unexpected cost and may also prevent renters from monitoring and managing their usage.

When the reforms commence, rental property owners or managers will have to provide renters with utility bills that the renter is responsible for paying within 4 weeks from when the rental property owner receives the bill from the relevant authority.

The renter will not be required to pay the utility bill if it is not provided within the required timeframe. This reform will make fees and charges fairer. It will commence on a date to be fixed by Proclamation.

Cap reletting costs

Renters who want to end a fixed-term agreement early may be required to pay the reasonable costs incurred by the rental property owner in reletting the property. Current rental laws provide little guidance about what are considered reasonable costs.

Reletting costs are a barrier to renters moving to more suitable or affordable housing, and may deter renters from entering into long-term tenancy agreements.

When the reform commences, reletting costs will be limited based on the amount of time left on a lease.

Limiting reletting costs to a prescribed amount will alleviate some of the costs incurred by renters, while continuing to compensate property owners for costs involved in reletting the property. Limiting these fees may also encourage longer tenancies, as renters will know the cost to end a tenancy.

This reform will commence on a date to be fixed by Proclamation.

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