A fair and safe rental market

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Highlights

As the Victorian regulator of residential tenancies, we work to achieve fair and safe rental housing in Victoria. Our priority is to ensure that the residential tenancy framework in Victoria is reflective of the modern marketplace to deliver best results for all in the accommodation sector. This includes increased collaboration with partners so that we can continue to improve our understanding of the needs of a modern market, and make positive changes across the sector more broadly.

Residential tenancies continue to be one of the main reasons Victorians contact us. In 2016-17, we assisted 69,472 callers with residential tenancy matters and 77,847 callers to the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority (RTBA). The most viewed section of our website was renting, with 1.8 million visits, an increase of more than 300,000 visits compared to last year.

The number of bonds held in trust by the RTBA increased by almost 29,000 in 2016-17 to a total of over 622,000, and their total value exceeded $1 billion for the first time.

While bonds held continue to increase, telephone enquiries to the RTBA are decreasing, mostly due to tenants and landlords using our digital services to obtain information regarding their rights and responsibilities.

 

Our review of the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 continued and in April this year we launched a new licensing scheme for rooming house operators to better protect residents.

The following table provides more details about our activities related to residential tenancies in 2016-17.

Information, advice and service delivery to tenants, landlords and agents

2014-15

2015-16

2016-17

Information and advice 
Website sessions - Renting section 1,236,289 1,552,271 1,878,001
Calls answered - RTBA 73,791 69,365 69,472
RentRight app downloads 99,325 90,224 77,847
Compliance 
Rooming house inspections (including repeat visits)  679 1,252 621
Rooming houses registered 1,129
1,157
1,184
Transactions
Bonds lodged  228,955  236,971 241,489
Bond repayments  203,614 210,963 212,749
Bonds transferred  73,639 79,258 89,375
Bonds held 567,550 593,558 622,298
Value held  $874 million $951 million $1.04 billion
Total transactions - RTBA  432,569  447,934 454,238
Face-to-face or intensive assistance
Funded community services      
Tenants assisted under the Tenancy Advice and Assistance Program 6,267  5,758 6,186
Assessments      
Repair reports 936  916 948
Goods left behind 3,885 3,861 3,531
Rental reports 1,115 1,068 1,234