NSW LABOR INTRODUCES BILL TO END UNFAIR ‘NO REASON’ EVICTIONS
NSW Labor today introduced a major reform to residential tenancy laws with a Bill to end the termination of tenancies without providing a reason.
More people are renting long term, and good tenants deserve security of tenure. However, landlords are currently allowed to issue a notice to end a tenancy agreement on ‘no grounds’. These notices are often in retaliation to a tenants’ request for repairs or maintenance.
Shadow Minister for Consumer Protection Julia Finn today commenced the second reading of the Residential Tenancies Amendment (Reasons for Termination) Bill 2021 in the Legislative Assembly.
“There is a history of tenants being evicted without any reason in retaliation for asserting their rights, such as overdue repairs or maintenance, or because of discrimination,” said Ms Finn.
“There is always a good reason to evict a bad tenant. The Bill is designed to stop retaliatory evictions and enhance the security of tenure for tenants.
“Changes to ‘no grounds’ evictions won’t leave landlords worse off, since the Bill includes additional specific grounds for termination such as the premises needing renovation or the landlord moving in themselves. The new grounds are in addition to existing ones such as the property being used for illegal purposes.
“And in a rapidly increasing tight rental market, without addressing no reason eviction, landlords may evict tenants in order to re-let the property at a higher weekly rent and expose evicted tenants to overheated rental markets across the state.
“With record low levels of housing affordability and record low rental vacancy rates across the state, it is more urgent than ever before to end unfair no reason evictions in NSW.”
Ms Finn said the NSW Government has failed to support landlords through the pandemic and their measures compare very poorly to Victoria, which instituted a rental assistance fund to provide rent relief payments of up to $3,000 to residents experiencing rental hardship due to the pandemic.
“Unlike NSW, other states such as Victoria assisted landlords and tenants during the COVID-19 pandemic and have already abolished no reason evictions,” Ms Finn added.
“It is clear the current laws in NSW are failing and a major overhaul of residential tenancies law is needed.”