Get To Know The Rules & Regulations In Northern Territory (NT) Before Renting Out Your Own Property
Many property owners prefer to cut out the real estate agent (and their fees) and simply self-manage their property themselves. Renting out your own property is certainly not rocket science, and can be an extremely rewarding experience (both financially and personally) but it is worthwhile getting the basics right so that you and your tenant are set-up for success.
This article aims to provide readers with a quick reference guide on where to go and what to do when starting out.
Know The Market
When preparing to rent out your own property, it is important to familiarise yourself with similar rental properties in your area. NT is a large geographic area and the property market can seem complex, so we have compiled a summary of ‘Fast Facts’ that will help you understand the rental landscape.
There were 228,833 people in NT as at the last census date in 2016, and here are the key figures to know:
- 48.2% female and 51.8% male
- Average weekly gross household income increased from $1,674 in 2011 to $1,983 in 2016
- 2% of population aged between 15-6 and only 7.2% over 65
- Of occupied private dwellings in Northern Territory – 50.3% rented, compared to 29.6% mortgaged and 15.3% owned outright
- Of occupied private dwellings in Northern Territory, 66.3% were separate houses, 12.1% were semi-detached, row or terrace houses, townhouses etc, 17.5% were flats or apartments and 3.3% were other dwellings.
- In Northern Territory, of occupied private dwellings 7.5% had 1 bedroom, 22.0% had 2 bedrooms and 42.4% had 3 bedrooms. The average number of bedrooms per occupied private dwelling was 2.9.
- The average household size was 2.9 people.
- In Northern Territory, of all households, 72.8% were family households, 21.9% were single person households and 5.3% were group households.
- In Northern Territory, 31.6% of occupied private dwellings had one registered motor vehicle garaged or parked at their address, 34.4% had two registered motor vehicles and 18.2% had three or more registered motor vehicles.
Knowing The Right Time To Increase Rent
Most State government have rules about when a landlord can increase the rent on their investment property. The restrictions only apply where there is an existing tenant in the property, so if you are looking to sign on a new tenant you can just change the asking rent when you advertise.
- Fixed-term lease: Cannot increase the rent during the fixed-term unless the terms of the lease specifically allow for it and define the amount (in this case, give tenant 30 days notice in writing)
- Periodic (continuing) Lease: Can increase the rent by giving at least 30 days notice in writing but can do so only once in any 6 month period and not during the first 6 months of tenancy
- Notice Form: Specific form found here
- Tenant’s rights: the tenant can apply to the NTCAT for a declaration that rent payable is excessive
Starting a Lease
Starting a lease typically consists of 4 key elements, which have slightly different names depending on which state you are operating in, but ultimately have a similar intent and outcome. The ‘big 4’ are;
Starting a lease typically consists of 4 key elements:
Consumer Affairs – Phone 1800 019 319
- Guide (click here) – Guide to renting in Northern Territory for landlord and tenants
- Lease (click here) – Ask us for a copy of a template residential tenancy agreement
- Condition report (click here) – to be completed within 3 days of the start of the tenancy
- Bond (click here) – Bonds paid to private landlords are held by them in trust
More information on lodging bonds in NT:
Since there is no centralised bond institution in the Northern Territory, bonds are paid to private landlords and held by them in trust. This means the tenant will need to directly pay you, and you will need to provide them with a receipt. The bond must be deposited into a bank or other financial institution account in the Northern Territory.
How Can RentBetter.com.au help?
Of course, at RentBetter.com.au our aim is to make this a seamless, frictionless experience for you and your tenant by including the necessary documents and compliance into our process – you can click here to sign-up and get started.
RentBetter is designed to help you find and manage tenants using the RentBetter Platform. Our customers use RentBetter to advertise their property on the major property portals (Realestate.com.au and Domain.com.au), and our platform can help with enquiries, applications, tenant checks and lease documents to assist you in finding a high-quality tenant for your property. The RentBetter platform can also help to onboard your tenant to your lease, and automate the process of rent collection, tracking, receipts, maintenance, and reporting.