Real Estate Excellence Industry Update

Emailed to Real Estate Excellence free industry mailing list and or posted on social media

 Real Estate Excellence Member updates here. 

Upcoming Property Management Excellence education and training events here.

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Queensland member office private group here

Property Management Excellence  

Stacey Holt Real Estate Excellence 

Queensland property management training - Stacey Holt

Instagram @staceyholtrealestateexcellence

20th January 2021

Good afternoon

We have seen as part of our Membership and PME system (realestateexcellence.com.au) support services, an increase in advice being sought regarding tenants refusing entry for lawful reasons such as inspections.  A reminder regarding one of the Covid tenancy regulation laws which has currently been extended until 30 April 2021 includes tenants right to refuse entry as per rules of entry. 

Entering a property

Keeping tenants, property owners and managers safe can help stop the spread of coronavirus

Ensuring the health and safety of tenants, property owners and managers is a priority during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Queensland Government introduced new laws that ensure properties can still be looked after and tenants, property owners and managers can stay healthy and safe. 

During this time, it’s important that tenants, property owners and managers work together so we can make renting work for everyone.

It’s important all parties:

  • follow public health directives and advice 
  • communicate openly
  • understand each other’s circumstances
  • develop an acceptable solution
  • document any decisions made.

If an agreement can't be reached you can request free dispute resolution with the RTA.

Tenants

During the pandemic, tenants can refuse entry to their home some circumstances such as:

1.     If they, someone else in their household or their property owner or manager are in quarantine and entry to the property would contravene a public health direction.

2.     If they or someone in their household is a vulnerable person who should limit their contact with other people, this includes:

  • ­people aged 70 years and over
  • ­people aged 65 years and over with an existing medical condition
  • ­people with compromised immune systems or
  • ­Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 50 years and over with an existing medical condition.

If either one of the circumstances above applies and tenants refuse physical entry to their property manager or owner for non-essential reasons they must:

  • allow a virtual inspection to take place or to take part in a video conference or 
  • take photos or videos of your property to help monitor its condition or to allow viewings for sale or reletting
  • tenants are not required to purchase equipment, applications or services to allow for a virtual inspection to occur, for example, cameras, phones or internet services.

Property maintenance and repair

Requirements for property owners and agents to conduct routine repairs and maintenance have been relaxed during the COVID-19 pandemic, but tenants can still request these if they or a household member are not subject to a quarantine direction and are not considered vulnerable, and public health directives are followed

Entry is permitted to respond to emergency repairs or to protect the premises from damage. Access must also be given for essential reasons to comply with existing legislation including monitoring smoke alarms and electrical safety switches.

ENTERING A PROPERTY FACT SHEET
Download (PDF 466KB)
Current version: v3 Oct20

 Entering a property | Residential Tenancies Authority (rta.qld.gov.au).

The Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) will launch a new Tenancy Dispute Resolution Web Service in late January. Property managers/owners and tenants will be able to use the new 24/7 service to request free RTA dispute resolution for either:  

More RTA to launch Tenancy Dispute Resolution Web Service | Residential Tenancies Authority

11th January 2021 10.15am 

Queensland Health link with all information (to be updated after this morning announcement plus Q and A’s) here.

9th January 2021 

Can I move houses into/outside the lockdown area?
 
Yes. You may move to a new residence during the lockdown period. If you move into an impacted area, you must comply with the lockdown restrictions. This means only leaving your residence for a permitted purpose such as work, essential shopping and exercise and wearing a mask when out of your home.
If you leave an impacted area to move to a house located outside the impacted area, you must continue to observe the same lockdown rules such as only leaving the home for permitted purposes and wearing a mask when you leave your residence. Source Restrictions on Impacted Areas | Health and wellbeing | Queensland Government (www.qld.gov.au) 12.30pm 
 
8th January 2021 RTA
 
Greater Brisbane COVID-19 lockdown changes from the RTA

From 6pm, Friday 8 January 2021 to 6pm, Monday 11 January 2021, people in the local government areas of Brisbane, Moreton Bay, Ipswich, Redlands and Logan will be required to stay at home and adhere to Queensland Government restrictions. During the lockdown period, physical open homes, inspections and auctions cannot be conducted in these areas. Virtual inspections or photos/videos may be considered. Read more.

8th January 2021 5.15pm QCAT 

The QCAT registry is closed on Friday 8 January 2021 at 4pm. The QCAT registry is  open on Monday 11 January 2021 from 8.30am to 4pm. Please only attend the Brisbane registry in person if your matter is truly urgent.

All matters to be heard on Monday and Tuesday 11 and 12 January are adjourned to a date to be fixed. Hearing arrangements for QCAT for Monday 11 January 2021 and Tuesday 12 January 2021

On 8 January 2021 the Greater Brisbane was declared a COVID-19 hotspot with the enforcement of a 3-day lockdown commencing at 6pm on 8 January 2021, lasting until 6pm Monday 11 January 2021. As a consequence, all QCAT hearings listed on 11 and 12 January 2021 are adjourned to a date to be fixed. Sourced from www.qcat.qld.gov.au 

8th January 2021 10.30am  

I am a real estate agent – can I conduct open house inspections or auctions?

If your open home is proposed to take place in the Greater Brisbane area, you will not be able to conduct an open home during the lockdown period.

Greater Brisbane will go into lockdown for three days, while contact tracers work to ensure the UK strain of COVID-19 is not circulating in the community.

From 6pm tonight, Friday 8 January, until 6pm Monday 11 January people in the local government areas of Brisbane, Moreton Bay, Ipswich, Redlands and Logan will be required to stay at home except for the following reasons:

  • Shopping for essentials, food and necessary supplies
  • Medical or healthcare needs, including compassionate requirements
  • Exercise with no more than one other person, unless all from the same household
  • Providing care or assistance to an immediate family member
  • Work, or volunteering, or study if it is not reasonably practicable to work or learn remotely
  • Child custody arrangements
  • Legal obligations
  • Visit for end of life
  • Attend funeral or wedding in line with restrictions

Masks will also need to be worn everywhere in those local government areas except if people are at home.

Cafes, pubs and restaurants will be open only for take-away service.

Funerals and weddings will be restricted to 20 guests.

All essential businesses remain open. If you need to leave Greater Brisbane for an essential purpose, such as to work, to return home or to access healthcare, you should limit your movements for those three days wherever you go.

Sourced from Greater Brisbane 3-day lockdown | Health and wellbeing | Queensland Government (www.qld.gov.au) 10.30am 08 01 2021

8th January 2021 8.45am Email to Industry Mailing list

Good morning

Based on this information below, Real Estate Excellence - Stacey Holt advice is auctions, open homes and inspections  be cancelled in these areas for this period. The period could be extended.

I will continue to update the Real Estate Excellence Industry Update and social media.

Greater Brisbane will be entering a three-day lockdown, starting 6pm tonight.

MORE: Authorities worried UK strain of COVID-19 may be so infectious it broke through normal quarantine protocols - ABC News

Coronavirus (COVID-19) | Health and wellbeing | Queensland Government (www.qld.gov.au)

People living in council areas of Brisbane, Logan, Ipswich, Moreton Bay, and Redlands affected.

Masks are mandated if you are leaving home for an essential reason.

ABC

 AAA

7th January 2021

You may recall a Real Estate Excellence Industry Update email sent in August last year (below) regarding the then ‘new” RTA end of tenancy email service.  Refer below to latest RTA information regarding this service and more. 

The Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) is streamlining its customer correspondence to make essential tenancy information easier to access for Queensland tenants and property owners/managers. 

The RTA’s review of existing correspondence – including automated customer notifications – will ensure all parties receive concise and practical information at key stages of their tenancy. 

Customers will benefit from smarter correspondence with clear education and information around common topics including starting and ending a tenancy, using RTA Web Services, accessing dispute resolution assistance from the RTA and much more. 

The RTA will work closely with sector peak bodies throughout the review.  

The existing RTA end of tenancy email to tenants is currently on hold while the review is underway. Automated correspondence around lodgements, refunds and other essential transactions will continue as normal. 

If you would like to provide feedback on how the RTA can improve its customer correspondence, we encourage you to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your suggestions by 31 January 2021.  

The above information has been sourced from www.rta.qld.gov.au

19th October 2020 past Real Estate Excellence Industry Update

Good morning,

I have received several emails from Real Estate Excellence members expressing thoughts and some concerns regarding the new RTA end of tenancy email service to tenants. The RTA advised industry they were going to start this service on the 10th August via the news part of their website and email.

If you and or your agency have any feedback for the RTA regarding this service, and or any other matter, I suggest clicking on this link and providing the feedback etc. www.rta.qld.gov.au/contact

The following information has been sourced from www.rta.qld.gov.au

 End-of-tenancy email for tenants

As part of supporting the end-to-end customer journey, the RTA has today launched an educational email, which will be sent to all tenants listed on a bond when our records indicate they are six weeks away from their tenancy end date.  

This educational email will:

remind tenants of their bond number, which is essential for transacting with the RTA

provide links to valuable resources to help tenants navigate the process when a tenancy is coming to an end

encourage tenants to update their details with the RTA

ask tenants to update their end-of-tenancy date if they’ve extended their tenancy, which will allow the RTA to better predict when there will be increased demand for our services, and to plan our resources accordingly.

6th January 2021 

I refer to the QCAT website every business day to see if any tenancy related decisions or appeals have been published. Some decisions and appeals over the years have changed industry practice immediately. (Hence the Property Management Excellence (PME) system (realestateexcellence.com.au)  has to be updated at times to reflect any precedents).

QCAT began December 1 2009. All the decisions and appeals relating to tenancy are available at Member online login (realestateexcellence.com.au)  Folder 30 (QCAT folder). An appeal published today (Martin & Anor v Chadia Chalmers Realty Pty Ltd [2020] QCATA 164)  I thought would be of great interest and use to property managers and the industry relating to appeals. 

What is the context within which the Appeal Tribunal considers the grounds of appeal?

[2] An application for leave is not an occasion to re-try the case presented at trial, as if the latter were a mere ‘preliminary skirmish’.2 The tenants’ grounds of appeal alleging lack of justiciability, not being provided a transcript or audio, denial of procedural fairness and bias, ignoring “rules of equity”, non-acceptance of their evidence, together with challenging the learned Adjudicator’s findings do not align with the Tribunal’s mandate to conduct proceedings in a way that is fair, just, economical, informal and quick3 or established principle.4
[3] The Tribunal is not bound by the rules of evidence,5 and may inform itself in any way it considers appropriate.6 The Tribunal’s reasons are not to be scrutinised ‘with an eye keenly attuned to error’.7 The Tribunal must act fairly8 and according to principles of natural justice9 with as little formality and as much speed as matters permit.10
[4] An appellable error is not demonstrated by identifying other possibilities not mentioned or not apparently considered - the Tribunal may decide the case in a way that does not require the determination of a particular submission and therefore simply put it aside.11 The Tribunal may have unexpressed findings of fact.12 In determining whether to grant leave, the Tribunal will consider established principles including:
(a) whether there is a reasonably arguable case of error in the primary decision;13
(b) whether there is a reasonable prospect that the appellant will obtain substantive relief;14


1 Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 (Qld), s 293, s 341.
2 Mataitani v North Shore Realty Sunshine Coast [2020] QCATA 154, [12] citing Coulton v Holcombe (1986) 162 CLR 1, 7.
3 Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2009 (Qld), s 3(b).
4 King v ASIC [2018] QCA 352, citing with approval Beale v Government Insurance Office of NSW (1997) 48 NSWLR 430.
5 QCAT Act, s 28(3)(b).
6 Ibid s 28(3)(c).
7 WAEE v Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (2003) 236 FCR 593, [46].
8 Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2009 (Qld), s 28(2).
9 Ibid s 28(3)(a).
10 Ibid s 28(3)(d).
11 Soulemezis v Dudley (Holdings) Pty Ltd (1987) 10 NSWLR 247, 269, 270.
12 Ibid 272.
13 QUYD Pty Ltd v Marvass Pty Ltd [2009] 1 Qd R 41.
14 Cachia v Grech [2009] NSWCA 232

Source  Martin & Anor v Chadia Chalmers Realty Pty Ltd [2020] QCATA 164 (APL011-20) Member Hughes 8 December 2020

5th January 2021

Happy New Year. Hoping this note finds you well. The RTA have updated the forms outlined below. Please find following the upcoming Property Management Excellence (PME) half day training events being carried out throughout Queensland. Many of the sessions are starting to book out so please register soon to avoid disappointment. Thanks for your interest and support. I look forward to seeing many of you soon.  A reminder Real Estate Excellence members regarding the December/January Member update – details here and scroll down to 5th December (or email us).

Forms for general tenancies – sourced from RTA website

FORM NAME

DOWNLOAD

VERSION

Domestic and family violence notice ending tenancy
*UPDATED*

PDF

v3 Dec20

Domestic and family violence report
*UPDATED*

PDF

v3 Dec20

Notice of lessor's intention to sell premises
Form 10 *UPDATED*

PDF

v13 Dec20

Notice to leave
Form 12 *UPDATED*

PDF

v18 Dec20

Notice of intention to leave
Form 13 *UPDATED*

​PDF

v17 Dec20

Notice to vacate from mortgagee to tenants
Form 19 * UPDATED*

PDF

v3 Dec20

  Property Management Excellence PME training and education events

The half day Property Management Excellence (PME) training and educations events will be held in the areas as shown below (scroll down). Register for an event online at the link beside location below or email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. name of attendee, email address, agency name for us to register you manually to save the online booking fee charged by the third-party provider. Please review requirements for Covid, dietary and more prior to booking. Refer below, and or contact us for more information.

The upcoming event will cover the following.

Stacey Holt from Real Estate Excellence will present this information and educational forum focusing on three main topics.

Breaches of the tenancy agreement contract by tenants during the agreement and what all property managers need to know. This part of the study will include procedures, legislation, problem solving techniques and more.

Smoke alarm laws now and from January 1, 2022. What all property managers should have in place ready for the amended new laws. This part of the study will include tips on educating lessors and receiving lessor instructions to upgrade the alarms plus authority to pay for the works carried out.

RTRA Act review update. With the Labor Government re-elected, this part of the study will discuss what Labor wish to be changed in the tenancy law which was delayed in progressing due to Covid.

Investment for the half day education and training event 9.30am to 12.30pm including morning tea

PME and Platinum non PME Real Estate Excellence member office per person $70

Gold and Advisory Real Estate Excellence member office per person $80

Non-member office per person $144

Locations, Date, Venue and Registration details

Bundaberg - 24th February at Sugar Country Motor Inn Bundaberg – Register online here

Brisbane - 16th February at Kedron RSL  Chermside - Register online here (session fully booked with another session being held 19th March below)

Brisbane - 19th March at Kedron RSL Chermside - Register online here.

Cairns -  24th March at Shangri-La Hotel Cairns - Register online here

Fraser Coast -  25th February at Hervey Bay Boat Club - Urangan – Register online here

Gladstone - 11th March at Yaralla Sports Club Barney Point – Register online here

Gold Coast  - 17th February  at The Club at Parkwood Village - Parkwood - Register online here.

Ipswich  - 19th February at  Brothers Ipswich  Raceview - Register online here.

Mackay -  3rd March at Ocean International Illawong (Far) Beach Mackay - Register online here

Rockhampton - 10th March at Rockhampton Leagues Club  Rockhampton  - Register online here

Sunshine Coast -  26th February at Oaks Oasis Resort Caloundra - Register online here.

Toowoomba - 18th February at Toowoomba Sports Ground East Toowoomba - Register online here.

Townsville -  16th March at Metropole Hotel South Townsville – Register online here

Dietary Requirements, workbooks and tickets

The training event includes morning tea. Please advise of any dietary requirements at least seven days prior to event by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. The workbook for the training will be emailed to registered attendees email address for printing or uploading to your device to bring to the event prior to the training day. Please bring your ticket on the day to register for the training.

Covid 19 requirements

All attendees will be required to register their attendance upon arrival and adhere to any Covid safe requirements specified by the venue

18th December 2020

xmas 2

18th December 2020

Sourced from the QCAT website.

Qcat

10th December 2020

Queensland property industry training units - direct source here.

List of approved units of competency that must be completed to qualify for the following licence and registration types: real estate agent, resident letting agent, auctioneer (property), limited real estate agent business letting, limited real estate agent affordable housing, real estate salesperson and chattel auctioneer.

 Download (198 KiB) (PDF)

7th December 2020 

The Queensland Covid tenancy regulations have been extended (were due to expire 31 December 2020).

Meaning of COVID-19 legislation expiry day In an Act or statutory instrument, COVID-19 legislation expiry day means the earlier of— (a)30 April 2021; or (b)another day prescribed by regulation as the COVID-19 legislation expiry day.

Information is included in the Real Estate Excellence Member Update December 2020/January 2021 Member Update at Member Online as at 5th December, and will be emailed to you Wednesday. 

covid regs

7th December 2020 - Listen to a short podcast regarding the Queensland Real Estate Industry Covid Safe Plan here.

 

Queensland Real Estate COVID Safe Industry Plan

7 December 2020 Office of Fair Trading email 

This year has been challenging for the real estate industry and many businesses throughout Queensland. As we move towards the end of 2020 and get used to the ‘new normal’, it is important to remain vigilant and be prepared to contain future outbreaks of COVID-19. 

In order to achieve this, we have consulted with health authorities, representatives of peak property industry bodies and stakeholders to assist the real estate industry to develop the Queensland Real Estate COVID Safe Industry Plan

Approved by the Chief Health Officer, the plan is a resource to help real estate businesses and professionals continue to operate under Queensland’s current COVID-19 restrictions. COVID Safe Plans will continue to be reviewed and updated in line with the easing of restrictions. 

Businesses must continue to comply with general Chief Health Officer directions and requirements, such as observing physical distancing and collecting and keeping customer contact information

Information on the most recent health directions including Businesses, activities and undertakings and Going out, travel, recreation and gathering in Queensland are available on the Queensland Health website. 

If you have any questions regarding the Chief Health Officer directions and requirements, please call 134 COVID (13 42 68) or visit the Queensland Health website.

Image

1st December 2020

Social media post - “For tenants, setting up a small temporary pool on the property may be tempting as the days warm up, but pool safety, compliance and approvals – including from the property owner –must always remain top of mind.”

Property owners and tenants are been reminded that temporary pools, such as those sold at hardware and department stores, must also comply with pool safety barrier laws.

Queensland Pool safety laws apply to pools and spas which can be filled with water to a depth of 300mm. Read more here.

30th November 2020

Social media post - Blinds, curtain cords and rental property Queensland

A reminder for the industry and investors due to a tragedy on the Sunshine Coast reported by the Courier Mail 30th November 2020. Read more here.

30th November 2020 

Good afternoon, the Queensland Labor Government have passed amendments and extended the Covid19 tenancy regulation regarding domestic violence, entry and maintenance provisions which were due to expire December 31, 2020. Please refer to below. The laws have not yet commenced but are expected to soon. Members of Real Estate Excellence, please refer to notes for you below. Non-Members please refer to your preferred industry advisor and or the RTA.

Real Estate Excellence Members, the December 2020/January 2021 Member Update was released last Friday 27th November at Member Online, , and has now been withdrawn. A version 2 will be released once the amended Covid regulations receive assent (commence). We shall release version 2 and confirm with you that the Covid19 tenancy amendments have passed and extended to April 31 2020 (to be confirmed).

Dece 2020

When the Pandemic first began, the Queensland Government created the Covid-19 Emergency Response Act, which then allowed for many regulations for certain industries/sectors to also be created. Section 24 (below) was the relevant section for Residential Tenancies. You will see the changes to the regulations below. Please note these have not yet received assent.

COVID-19 Emergency Response Act 2020

24 Regulation-making power for residential tenancies and rooming accommodation etc.

(1)A regulation under this Act or the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 (the RTRA Act) may make provision for any matter necessary for responding to the COVID-19 emergency, including—

(a)to ensure rights, obligations and processes under the RTRA Act operate appropriately having regard to COVID-19 response measures; and

(b)to assist in achieving the objectives of COVID-19 response measures; and

(c)to support the Queensland residential rental sector during the COVID-19 emergency period.

(2)Without limiting subsection (1), a regulation may—

(a)impose a moratorium on evictions of tenants and residents during the COVID-19 emergency period; or

(b)alter the grounds on which notices to leave may be given; or

(c)enable particular disputes about unpaid rent to be conciliated by the Residential Tenancies Authority; or

(d)suspend a right or obligation under the RTRA Act in particular circumstances; or

(e)provide for applications to be made to, and decided by, a different entity to the entity provided for under the RTRA Act; or

(f)prohibit the inclusion of particular matters in a tenancy database within the meaning of section 457 of the RTRA Act; or

(g)amend a residential tenancy agreement or rooming accommodation agreement, including, for example, by—

(i)extending the term of the agreement; or

(ii)terminating the agreement; or

(iii)if there is more than 1 tenant or resident for the agreement—ending the interest of a tenant or resident in the agreement; or

(h)extend the application of particular provisions of the RTRA Act to additional persons.

(3)A regulation under this section may—

(a)be inconsistent with an Act or law, other than the Human Rights Act 2019, to the extent necessary to achieve a purpose of the regulation and this Act; and

(b)have retrospective operation to a day not earlier than 19 March 2020; and

(c)impose a penalty of not more than 100 penalty units for a contravention of the regulation.

(4)Without limiting subsection (3)(a), to the extent a person’s act or omission complies with a regulation made under this section that is inconsistent with an Act or law, the person does not incur civil or criminal liability under the Act or law for the act or omission.

(5)A regulation under this section must declare it is made under this section.

(6)This section does not limit a regulation-making power under the RTRA Act.

(7)If there is an inconsistency between a regulation made under this section and any of the following, the regulation prevails to the extent of the inconsistency—

(a)a provision of an Act or law, other than the Human Rights Act 2019;

(b)another regulation made under the RTRA Act;

(c)a standard term or special term of a residential tenancy agreement or rooming accommodation agreement.

(8)A regulation made under this section expires on 31 December 2020. (this has changed)

(9)The Statutory Instruments Act 1992section 49(1) applies to the tabling of a regulation made under this section as if the reference to 14 sitting days were a reference to 14 days.

(10)In this section—

resident see the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008schedule 2.

residential tenancy agreement see the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008section 12.

rooming accommodation agreement see the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008section 16.

tenant see the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008schedule 2.

Amendment of s 24 (Regulation-making power for residential tenancies and rooming accommodation etc.) Section 24(8)— omit, insert— (8) A regulation under this section must be made before, and expires on, the COVID-19 legislation expiry day.

NEW section added

4A Meaning of COVID-19 legislation expiry day

In an Act or statutory instrument, COVID-19 legislation expiry day means the earlier of—

(a)30 April 2021; or

(b)another day prescribed by regulation as the COVID-19 legislation expiry day.

16th November 2020 - The following apply from 4pm 17th November 2020 - Queensland Health Officer direction COVID19 update

Questions about real estate from 4pm 17th November 2020

I work in the real estate industry; can I conduct an open house inspection on a property?

Yes, open house inspections are permitted. The agent must ensure that they limit the number of attendees to no more than one person per 2 square metres at a time.

The agent should ensure good hand hygiene and frequent environmental cleaning and disinfection is maintained during an open house inspection.

Given the close interaction involved, agents are required to keep a record of all guests’ contact information, including name, phone number, email address and the date and time period of patronage for 56 days (8 weeks) to assist with contact tracing if required.

The agent should ensure that physical distancing, hand hygiene and frequent environmental cleaning and disinfection is maintained during an open house inspection.

Can I go to an auction?

Yes, auctions are permitted but the auctioneer and agents must ensure that they limit the number of attendees to no more than one person per 2 square metres of space available for staging the auction.

The event should be staged in such a way that physical distancing is observed and all participants can stay at least 1.5 metres apart if possible.

Given the close interaction involved, agents are required to keep a record of all guests’ contact information, including name, email address, phone number, and date and time of patronage, for 56 days (8 weeks) to assist with contact tracing if required.

Sourced from www.qld.gov.au/health 16th November 2020

19th October 2020

Good morning,

I have received a number of emails from Real Estate Excellence members expressing thoughts and some concerns regarding the new RTA end of tenancy email service to tenants. The RTA advised industry they were going to start this service on the 10th August via the news part of their website and email.

If you and or your agency have any feedback for the RTA regarding this service, and or any other matter, I suggest clicking on this link and providing the feedback etc. www.rta.qld.gov.au/contact

The following information has been sourced from www.rta.qld.gov.au

 End-of-tenancy email for tenants

As part of supporting the end-to-end customer journey, the RTA has today launched an educational email, which will be sent to all tenants listed on a bond when our records indicate they are six weeks away from their tenancy end date.  

This educational email will:

remind tenants of their bond number, which is essential for transacting with the RTA

provide links to valuable resources to help tenants navigate the process when a tenancy is coming to an end

encourage tenants to update their details with the RTA

ask tenants to update their end-of-tenancy date if they’ve extended their tenancy, which will allow the RTA to better predict when there will be increased demand for our services, and to plan our resources accordingly.

13th October 2020

 Good morning,

As the industry is aware, the current Labor Government were very close to introducing a bill to make many changes to the RTRA Act after a lengthy consultation process. For more information regarding the consultation and proposed changes, click here.

We know we have a state election on 31st October. The LNP have communicated with me, and they do not support most of the Labor tenancy policies and future changes. To review the communication from the LNP, click here. It is expected that should Labor be re-elected, and once the Covid19 crisis eases, they will continue with the proposed changes which were paused due to the pandemic.

A reminder for Real Estate Excellence members regarding the October member update which included a 25 page overview of the Covid19 law changes etc., a lessor information guide regarding the laws and changes and more. Visit here for more information.

24th September 2020

Queensland is now the sole Australian state to not extend its ban on evicting residential tenants during the COVID-19 pandemic, with a new open letter signed by almost 40 peak bodies, unions and frontline community organisations urging the government to do so. Read more here.

22nd September 2020 - Watch short video on the changes that are coming and what we know here.

21st September 2020 - An updated September member update has been emailed to Members of Real Estate Excellence regarding the Covid tenancy regulation amendments. Latest Real Estate Excellence Member update here.

18th September 2020 - Real Estate Excellence members - please note I have withdrawn the September Member Update emailed to you and posted on member online 1st and 3rd September given the regulations will be updated. An updated September member update has been uploaded to Member online.  

1pm An update regarding the below video regarding the Covid tenancy regulations - the Covid 19 tenancy regulations will be amended. View short video here.

7am View a video explaining the 17th September post here.

17th September 2020

Good afternoon, you most likely have heard, seen etc. the media and other reports regarding ending of the rent eviction moratorium etc.

In early August, I began preparing my membership best practice guides for the end of September. This is when I first became aware of the issue before us come September 29.  How can a notice to leave for rent arrears be given to a tenant for rent given that a notice to remedy breach cannot be issued first under section 11 (2)?

(Please keep reading for further explanation as to why).

I contacted the RTA mid-August regarding my questions and concern and we met.  At no point did the RTA state my thoughts were incorrect, nor explain the lawful way a notice to leave for unremedied breach rent arrears could be given post September 29.

I have emailed the RTA just now seeking urgent clarification. I am emailing you in good faith and transparency given my recent advice.

Section 8  of the Covid regulations states ‘relevant period means the period starting on 29 March 2020 and ending on the earlier of the following days—

(a)29 September 2020;

(b)the last day of the COVID-19 emergency period.

My initial thought is September 29 is the earlier period (December 31, 2020 is the last day of the emergency period), however, section 11 (2) states ‘2)The lessor must not give the tenant a notice to remedy breach under section 280 of the Act but may give the tenant a show cause notice for the unpaid rent’.

Given the above (and the law in full below), I cannot see how a notice to leave for rent arrears can be given as a notice to remedy must be given first.

Rent arrears, Section 8 and 11  of the Covid regulations.

Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation (COVID-19 Emergency Response) Regulation 2020

Reprint current from 24 April 2020 to date (accessed 17 September 2020 at 14:32)

  1. Part 2
  2. Division 1
  3. Section 8

8 Moratorium on evictions

(1)Until the end of the relevant period, a lessor or lessor’s agent must not evict a tenant for failure to pay rent as required under the residential tenancy agreement if the failure relates to the tenant suffering excessive hardship because of the COVID-19 emergency.

Maximum penalty—50 penalty units.

(2)Subsection (1) does not prevent a lessor ending a residential tenancy agreement under the Act

(a)for any reason other than a failure to pay rent as required under the agreement; or

(b)for a failure to pay rent as required under the agreement if the failure was not related to the tenant suffering excessive hardship because of the COVID-19 emergency; or

(c)as a consequence of having given a notice to leave, or applying to the tribunal for an order terminating the agreement, before 29 March 2020.

(3)In this section—

evict, a tenant, means—

(a)give the tenant a notice to leave; or

(b)apply to the tribunal for an order terminating the residential tenancy agreement; or

(c)cause the tenant to vacate the premises by any of the following actions—

(i)coercing the tenant into agreeing to end the residential tenancy agreement under section 277(2) of the Act;

(ii)preventing the tenant from freely accessing the premises, including, for example, by changing the locks or intimidating the tenant;

(iii)causing the tenant to vacate the premises because of false or misleading information given to the tenant by the lessor or by another person on behalf of the lessor;

(iv)causing the tenant to vacate the premises because of acts of intimidation carried out by the lessor or by another person on behalf of the lessor.

relevant period means the period starting on 29 March 2020 and ending on the earlier of the following days—

(a)29 September 2020;

(b)the last day of the COVID-19 emergency period.

11 Unpaid rent—show cause notice

(1)This section applies if—

(a)the rent payable under a residential tenancy agreement has remained unpaid in breach of the agreement for at least 7 days; and

(b)the lessor knows, or ought reasonably to know, the tenant is or has been suffering excessive hardship because of the COVID-19 emergency.

(2)The lessor must not give the tenant a notice to remedy breach under section 280 of the Act but may give the tenant a show cause notice for the unpaid rent.

(3)If the tenant is given a show cause notice for the unpaid rent, the tenant must do either of the following within 14 days after being given the notice—

(a)pay the unpaid rent;

(b)inform the lessor the rent is unpaid because the tenant is or has been suffering excessive hardship because of the COVID-19 emergency.

(4)Despite subsection (2), if the tenant does not comply with subsection (3) the lessor may give the tenant a notice to remedy breach under section 280 of the Act for the unpaid rent.

(5)If—

(a)the tenant does not pay the unpaid rent within 14 days after being given the show cause notice; and

(b)the tenant informs the lessor under subsection (3)(b) that the rent is unpaid because the tenant is or has been suffering excessive hardship because of the COVID-19 emergency;

      the lessor may request that the tenant enter into a tenancy variation agreement with the lessor.

(6)This section overrides section 280 of the Act to the extent of the inconsistency between this section and section 280 of the Act.

(7)In this section—

show cause notice, for unpaid rent by a tenant, means a notice, in the approved form, stating all of the following—

(a)the tenant has not paid rent as required by the agreement;

(b)the amount of the unpaid rent;

(c)that the tenant must respond to the notice, or pay the amount of unpaid rent, within 14 days of receiving the notice;

(d)that, in responding to the notice, the tenant must state whether or not the rent is unpaid because the tenant is or has been suffering excessive hardship because of the COVID-19 emergency.

Also, section 35 and 37 are the provisions for the lessor to give notice for owner occupation and or property for sale/sold. The RTA advice as at today is that ends on 29th September. I have asked for clarification as to where it states in the Covid regulations that it ends at this time.   Read the laws here.

We still have over 2 weeks to get this right. Thank you.

16th September 2020

Good afternoon, as per the industry update on the 11th September, the Housing Minister has announced the information below.

Plus, since we last wrote, the following has been recorded. Listen to a Podcast regarding a notice to leave without grounds and Covid affected tenancies here.

 Greater certainty paves way for return to rent normality

Published Today at 03:00 PM

Minister for Housing and Public Works, Minister for Digital Technology and Minister for Sport
The Honourable Mick de Brenni

Several critical protections will stay in place to protect tenants as households continue to recover from the global economic impacts of the virus, Housing Minister Mick de Brenni said today.

These include:

  • Protections for tenants from being listed in a tenancy database for unpaid rent caused by COVID-19 impacts;
  • Tenants experiencing domestic violence being able to end their interest in a tenancy agreement quickly;
  • Limited reletting costs for eligible tenants who end their fixed lease early;
  • Entry restrictions and requirements that support social distancing requirements; and
  • Relaxed repair and maintenance obligations that recognise impacts on lessors while maintaining tenant safety in the rental property.

"These remaining COVID-19 protections for property owners and tenants will remain in place until 31 December 2020.

"The freeze on evictions was important in the residential sector when movement in Queensland was much more restricted," the Minister said.

"Because of our strong health response, we've been able to keep the economy more open and we've already started delivering Queensland's plan for economic recovery.

"This includes supporting businesses because that means supporting jobs.

"As a result, we've seen Queensland's economy fare better than other economies."

The RTA's latest COVID-19 conciliation data shows that tenants and property owners had worked together to resolve 1,677 disputes since April.

The volume of calls to the RTA has significantly reduced since the start of the year.

"Our free conciliation service will continue," the Minister said.

"We've seen 70 per cent of all conciliated tenancy disputes successfully resolved within an average of just over eight days.

"I want to congratulate property owners, managers and tenants for working together at what has been a difficult time for all Queenslanders.

"With the Australian property market expected to continue to change over the next period, we're asking all parties to continue to work together.

"I'd like to thank the Real Estate Institute of Queensland, Tenants Queensland, QShelter, Queensland Council of Social Service, and the Residential Tenancies Authority for their continued dedication to ongoing advocacy for their constituencies, whether they are tenants, property owners or managers."

For more information on assistance from the RTA, please visit rta.qld.gov.au/renting/covid-19-changes, read the Residential Tenancies Practice Guide, or call the RTA's 24/7 COVID hotline on 134 COVID (13 42 68).

The COVID-19 Housing Security Sub Committee, established by the government to monitor and advise on temporary measures during the global pandemic, will continue to observe impacts on the residential tenancies sector and recommend actions to support Queensland households.

Sourced from statements.qld.gov.au 

16th September 2020

Listen to a Podcast regarding a notice to leave without grounds and Covid affected tenancies here.

16th September 2020

QCAT update - sourced from QCAT website and posted on Real Estate Excellence Facebook page. For more information regarding this change, visit here.

QC

27th August 2020

Current public health alert for business activity (including for open homes and auctions) can be found here or Members email us please.

Good afternoon, 

The existing health alerts have not changed for Queensland agents and property managers regarding open homes.

Real Estate Excellence recommends members and industry to take extra caution and consider implementing additional procedures in reflection of recent events due to Covid19.

This may include best practice self-imposed restrictions of people entering property. 

 Current public health alert for business activity can be found here which includes information for agencies that began 24 July 2020. 

Real Estate Excellence members, please email us if your require any further support on this matter, or any other matter.

20th August 2020

Good morning, below are three free short training videos (each under 10 minutes in length). I hope you gain beneficial and of use.

PO Form 6 – tips and reminders – view here.

Form 18a – tips and reminders – view  here. 

Form 1a – tips and reminders – view here.

A reminder Property Management Excellence (PME)system member offices – there are many training videos at member online to assist with staff training and development. 39 chapters make up the PME system. If we can assist you, please let us know. Thank you.

12th August 2020

Good morning,

As the industry knows, 29th September is a key date for two reasons. The rent eviction moratorium ends and the requirement to extend Covid19 affected tenancies which expired prior to 29th September to be extended until 30th September. Tenants Queensland in recent weeks have begun lobbying for an extension and have started a petition to Government to extend these matters until 31st December 2020. Read more here.  

Real Estate Excellence members, I recorded a podcast this morning regarding the September member update and comprehensive information coming to you soon. Listen here.

The Housing Minister has been quoted in a Brisbane Times article today stating “government would be guided by national cabinet about the temporary protections, set to expire on September 29”.

We shall advise the Industry and particularly Real Estate Excellence members accordingly of any developments.

A reminder for Platinum PME and Platinum non PME members regarding the many best practice guides regarding all you need to know regarding the Covid laws are available at Member Online, (view a short video here) or please email us if we can assist with any best practice support on these, and any other matter.  

4th August 2020

Good morning, we hope this note finds you well. We thought you and the team may benefit from the below information.

‪Growing the rent roll in uncertain times and some thoughts, plus tips for overcoming management and let fee objections.

‪Apologies for little jumping around of me at beginning of video! I’m not used to sitting down 🪑.... hope these thoughts assist. 9.30 minutes view  here.

Domestic violence and Queensland COVID19 tenancy laws video 8.30 minutes view here.

Platinum PME and Platinum non PME member offices. COVID19 resources at member online video 3 minutes view here.

August Real Estate Excellence member update podcast 2.30 listen here.  Valued members the latest member update is now available to download at Member Online and will be emailed to you Thursday 6th August.

Thank you.