Get To Know The Rules & Regulations In Victoria (VIC) 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. VIC 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 5,926,624 people in VIC as at the last census date in 2016, and here are the key figures to know:
- 50.9% female, 49.1% male
- Average weekly gross household income increased from $1,216 in 2011 to $1,419 in 2016
- 2% of Vic population aged between 15-6 and only 15.6% over 65
- Privately Occupied Dwellings: 28.7% rented, compared to 35.3% mortgaged and 32.3% owned outright
- Of occupied private dwellings in Victoria, 73.2% were separate houses, 14.2% were semi-detached, row or terrace houses, townhouses etc, 11.6% were flats or apartments and 0.5% were other dwellings.
- In Victoria, of occupied private dwellings 5.1% had 1 bedroom, 19.3% had 2 bedrooms and 44.0% had 3 bedrooms. The average number of bedrooms per occupied private dwelling was 3.
- The average household size was 2.6 people.
- In Victoria, of all households, 70.8% were family households, 24.7% were single person households and 4.5% were group households.
- In Victoria, 34.2% of occupied private dwellings had one registered motor vehicle garaged or parked at their address, 36.7% had two registered motor vehicles and 17.7% 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
- Periodic (continuing) Lease: Can increase the rent by giving at least 60 days notice in writing but can do so only once in any 6 month period
- Notice Form: Specific form found here
- Tenant’s rights: within 30 days of receiving notice, the tenant can seek a rent assessment from Consumer Affairs if the tenant thinks the increase is excessive (after considering market rent)
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:
- Guide (click here) – new tenant checklist and tenancy guide for Victoria
- Lease (click here) – to be signed and with no cooling off period
- Condition report (click here) – to be completed at the start of the tenancy
- Bond (click here) – All rental bonds for properties in Victoria must be lodged with the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority
More information on lodging bonds in VIC:
Ph: RTBA Online 1300 137 164
All rental bonds for properties in Victoria must be lodged with the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority (RTBA) and is done as an electronic transaction (more info available here).
1. Collecting payment from tenant
As a property owner you will need to collect the bond from the tenant after a lease has been signed for a new tenancy. It is recommended that keys are not handed over until the bond has been paid.
2. Register to RTBA Online
3. Provide Property and Tenancy details
You will then be directed to an online Bond Lodgement form where you will need to enter property details.
After completing information about the rental property, you will need to fill in tenancy and bond details. You will need to provide a name and unique email address for each of your tenants.
Once reviewing lodgement details to ensure they are correct, select ‘Confirm details’. You can change information by clicking ‘Back to tenant details’.
4. Lodging the Bond
You can then lodge the bond by clicking ‘submit lodgement’ which will direct you to a confirmation page and provide a transaction number. Be sure to record this number so that you are able to track your transaction.
Each tenant will receive an email or SMS that will direct them to confirm the lodgement. If the tenant requests changes to the lodgement, you will be notified. Reminders will be sent out after 7 days if the tenant has not responded to the link.
Once verified, RTBA will debit the bond from the owners given bank account and should be processed within 2 business days.
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.