The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) government is releasing a new and updated resource aimed at helping tenants better understand the rental system.
With a third of Canberrans now renting, the ACT government wants to ensure all tenants are aware of their rights and have a working understanding of rental laws, according to Attorney-General Shane Rattenbury.
It’s led to the development of a new version of “The Renting Book”.
Under the Residential Tenancies Act 1997, landlords are required to provide a copy of “The Renting Book” to tenants or advise them of where they can get a copy before the tenancy begins.
“Everyone deserves a safe and secure place to live,” Mr Rattenbury said, considering the new book as a great resource for tenants.
It’s also timely — aiming to support anyone who is moving to Canberra at this time for study or work reasons.
Mr Rattenbury said that the “useful, updated and accessible” information on residential tenancy laws contained in the book will ultimately help landlords and real estate agents make sure that properties are managed appropriately and in accordance with the law.
According to him, the government will explore ways to make “The Renting Book” more accessible to tenants and landlords.
It will also be further updated if and when significant legislative changes are passed by the local government.
Despite aiming to cover the most current legislation, the book does not touch on temporary COVID-19 measures that have been put in place recently to assist tenants and landlords dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While the information in ‘The Renting Book’ covers the main issues that may arise before, during and after a tenancy, it is a guide only and I would encourage all tenants to always read their tenancy agreement closely and seek legal advice if unsure about their rights or responsibilities,” the attorney-general noted.
A further update of “The Renting Book” will incorporate changes to take effect in March.