WA Rental Reforms: A Guide for Tenants and Landlords

Rent Bidding Ban (May 2024):

  • Landlords and agents can no longer pressure tenants to pay above-advertised rent.
  • Properties must be advertised with a set asking price.
  • If you experience bidding, contact Consumer Protection (1300 30 40 54).

Retaliatory Action Protection (May 2024):

  • Tenants can challenge landlords who take unfair actions (e.g., rent increase, non-renewal) after exercising their rights (e.g., maintenance request, complaint).

Rent Increases (July 2024):

  • Rent can only be increased every 12 months, not every 6 months as before.
  • This applies to both periodic and fixed-term agreements (once the fixed term ends).

Pets Welcome (Likely July 2024):

  • In most cases, tenants can request permission to keep pets.
  • Landlords can only refuse with a valid reason (e.g., council by-law, unfenced property).
  • Reasonable pet conditions can be set (e.g., caged birds, carpet cleaning).

Making Your Rental Homey (Likely July 2024):

  • Tenants can make minor modifications with permission (e.g., hanging pictures, and water-saving showerheads).
  • Landlords can refuse for specific reasons (e.g., asbestos, heritage listing).
  • Reasonable conditions may apply (e.g., proper garden maintenance).
  • Tenants must remove modifications upon leaving unless otherwise agreed (e.g., picture hooks).

Dispute Resolution (Likely July 2024):

  • Disputes regarding pets, modifications, and bond release will be settled by the Consumer Protection Commissioner, not the courts.
  • Both parties can present their case online.

Streamlined Bond Release (Jan-July 2025):

  • A simpler process for bond release will minimize disputes.
  • All parties are notified about bond applications.
  • The Commissioner will rule if no agreement is reached.
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