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Queensland rental reforms cost tenants $5,000 a year

26 November 2019 Lyall Russell
Queensland properties

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has received more than 2,000 emails opposed to her government’s proposed rental reforms.

The Real Estate Institute of Queensland launched a campaign against the state’s rental reforms last week, and within the first two days, 1,000 emails were sent to the Premier.

“People are unhappy with these damaging proposed reforms, and they are making their voices heard,” REIQ CEO Antonia Mercorella said.

“Despite the state government’s misleading and disingenuous explanations regarding the real impact of the reforms, the community understands that the proposed changes would create the most onerous rental laws in the country.

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“Tenants, landlords and real estate professionals alike are all lending their voices to the campaign, in an attempt to prevent the destruction of Queensland’s rental market.”

While the focus has been on stripping landlord rights, new analysis shows the reforms could cost Queensland tenants more than $5,000 a year.

Property market research firm Propertyology found the changes could result in rents increasing by $100 a week as investors flee the market in droves due to laws restricting landlord’s asset ownership rights.

As a result, the laws will create an undersupply of rental properties in the state, Propertyology head of research Simon Pressley said.

“These ill-conceived reforms will create a major deterrent for any Queensland real estate-related business, which means lost employment opportunities for professions such as conveyancers, building and pest inspectors and property managers — and it’s not like Queensland is leading the national pack for job creation!” Mr Pressley said. 

“Queensland’s construction sector, one of the state’s largest employers, will also feel the brunt of this legislation, as to get a lot of projects out of the ground, developers generally rely on investors for pre-sale commitments.” 

Mr Pressley labels the reforms as idiocy, and he claims it will also hurt the state’s economy.

“The changes will mean that, even though they aren’t the owner of the asset, tenants will have the dominant hand when it comes to what they may do to a property and how long they live there for,” he said. 

“It’s a fundamental right, an unquestionable expectation, that the property owner — as with any asset that anyone owns — determines the ‘who, what and how’ they control their asset. 

“While tenants might currently think this new legislation is a dream come true, the probability is they will be faced with extreme household budget pressure sooner rather than later.” 

If the proposal becomes law, it could result in the state having the lowest vacancy rate in its history, which would result in a massive rent increase over the next two years, Mr Pressley said.

“Propertyology has analysed case studies, drawn comparisons, reviewed the various influencing metrics, and modelled possible rental growth across Queensland’s biggest cities. A $100 per week rent increase in Cairns, Townsville and Mackay over the next two years is well and truly on the cards.”

Queensland rental reforms cost tenants $5,000 a year
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