As you may be aware, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced a six-month moratorium on evictions as a result of financial distress if tenants are unable to meet their financial obligations. While we support the government’s intention to keep tenants safe in their homes during this crisis, this announcement has caused much concern and speculation due to the absence of a framework or any details. This is because residential tenancy laws are controlled by the states, so any change of the laws is a state concern.
The Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) has called upon the Queensland Government for urgent action to provide clarity which we are still anxiously awaiting. Importantly, late yesterday afternoon Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk confirmed the Queensland Government’s intention of implementing the Prime Minister’s moratorium on evictions. The REIQ is working hard with the Department of Housing and Public Works to determine the parameters of the protective measures in the interests of tenants, property owners and real estate professionals.
In the interim, it is important for tenants who have been affected financially by COVID-19 to get in touch with their managing agents before they start to fall into arrears. If we are aware of your situation, we can work with the owner of the property and design a rental payment plan or for more serious cases, a rent reduction plan.
Our thoughts go out to all those affected by this crisis.