Penalties - renting

Consumer Affairs Victoria can issue an infringement notice if we identify breaches of certain sections of the Residential Tenancies Act 1997.

An infringement notice allows you to pay a fine for these offences without an admission of guilt, rather than going to court.

The fine is less than the maximum penalty a court can impose if it found you guilty.

For full details of your legal obligations, refer to the Residential Tenancies Act 1997.

The value of a penalty unit is $155.46 for financial year 2016-17. This amount will change at the start of each financial year. For more information, visit the Indexation of fees and penalties page on the Department of Treasury and Finance website.

Section of the Residential Tenancies Act

Obligation

Penalty for breaching obligation

s.26(2)

A tenancy agreement must be in the prescribed form

10 penalty units

s.29(1)

A landlord must not give a tenant draft documents or terms to sign unless a copy has been provided to the tenant

10 penalty units

s.29(2)

A tenant must be given a signed copy of an agreement or terms within 14 days of being agreed to

10 penalty units

s.30(1)

A person must not refuse to let premises on the ground that the tenant intends to live in the premises with a child

10 penalty units

s.31(1)

A person must not demand or accept a bond of more than one month's rent if weekly rent is $350 or less

20 penalty units

s.34

A person must not demand or accept a second bond for a subsequent tenancy agreement

20 penalty units

s.35(1)

If a tenant pays a bond the landlord must, before commencement of occupation, give the tenant two signed copies of a Condition Report

10 penalty units

s.37(1)

A person must not demand or require a tenant to obtain a guarantee for performance of tenant's duties if the tenant pays a bond

20 penalty units

s.40(1)

A landlord must not require a tenant to pay rent more than one month in advance

20 penalty units

s.41

A landlord must not require a tenant to pay rent more than two weeks in advance if rent is payable each week

20 penalty units

s.43(1)

Written receipt for rent to be provided immediately if paid in person or within five business days if requested (and not paid in person)

10 penalty units

s.43(2)

Where rent is not paid in person and the tenant does not request a receipt, the landlord must retain records of all payments for 12 months

10 penalty units

s.43(2A)

Where a tenant requests a copy of a rent receipt within 12 months, the landlord must provide a copy within five business days

10 penalty units

s.49

A person must not take or dispose of a tenant’s goods as a result of rent owing

20 penalty units

s.50

A person who receives a payment from a tenant as a sign of good faith in respect of a proposed tenancy agreement must refund the payment

20 penalty units

s.51(1)

A person cannot charge a fee for making, continuing or renewing a tenancy agreement

20 penalty units

s.51(2)

A person cannot demand or receive a fee from the tenant for inspection of premises

20 penalty units

s.51(3)

A person cannot charge for rent payment card or use of direct debit to pay for rent

20 penalty units

s.56(1)

Landlord must not seek overpayment for utility charge

20 penalty units

s.66(1)

Landlord must give the tenant a copy of rights and duties in prescribed form

20 penalty units

s.66(2)

Landlord must provide full name, address and (where there is no agent) emergency telephone number in writing

20 penalty units

s.66(3)

If an agent acts for a landlord, the landlord must provide the tenant in writing with the agent’s name and address, whether the agent can authorise urgent repairs, and if so the agent's phone number for urgent repairs

20 penalty units

s.66(4)

The landlord must notify the tenant in writing of any changes in certain information previously provided within seven days after the change

20 penalty units

s.84(1)

A landlord must not demand or receive a fee for giving consent to the assignment or sub-letting of premises

20 penalty units

s.91A

A landlord or agent must not, without reasonable excuse, enter rented premises except in accordance with the Act.

20 penalty units

s.92C(1)

A rooming house owner must give the proposed resident a notice of residency right before occupation

10 penalty units

s.94B(1)

A rooming house owner must not increase room capacity without the required notice and consent

60 penalty units

s.96

A rooming house owner must not demand or accept a bond that exceeds 14 days of rent

20 penalty units

s.97(1)

If a resident pays a bond the rooming house owner must, before commencement of occupation, provide two signed copies of the Condition Report to the resident

10 penalty units

s.99

A rooming house owner must not require rent payable more then 14 days in advance

20 penalty units

s.100(1)

Written receipt for rent to be provided immediately if paid in person or within five days if requested (and not paid in person)

10 penalty units

s.100(2)

Where rent is not paid in person and the resident does not request a receipt the rooming house owner must retain records of all payments for 12 months

10 penalty units

s.100(2A)

Where a resident requests a copy of a rent receipt within 12 months, the rooming house owner must provide a copy within five business days

10 penalty units

s.107

A person must not take or dispose of a resident’s goods as a result of rent owing

20 penalty units

s.124

The rooming house owner must prominently display, in each resident’s room, a written statement of the resident’s rights and obligations (in the approved form) and a copy of the house rules

10 penalty units

s.125(1)

Rooming house owner must provide in writing their full name, address and (where there is no agent) emergency telephone number

60 penalty units

s.125(2)

If an agent acts for a rooming house owner, that owner must provide the resident in writing with the agent’s name and address, whether the agent can authorise urgent repairs, and if so the agent's phone number for urgent repairs

60 penalty units

s.125(3)

A rooming house owner must notify the resident in writing of any changes in certain information previously provided, within seven days after the change

60 penalty units

s.127(1)

The rooming house owner must give a resident at least seven days written notice of any proposed change to house rules

10 penalty units

s.142A

A rooming house owner or agent must not, without reasonable cause, enter a resident's room except in accordance with the Act

20 penalty units

s.142B

A rooming house owner must not provide a room, facility/service or access to a common area that does not comply with the prescribed privacy, safety, security and amenity standards

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.142D

An owner of a building, or that owner's agent who has reason to believe the building is being used as an unregistered rooming house, must notify the relevant Council.

20 penalty units

s.145

A caravan park owner must give notice to a person who intends to occupy a site as a main residence, that they may enter into a written agreement and become a resident if they occupy the premises for 60 consecutive days

10 penalty units

s.146(3)

A caravan park owner must not require a person to pay a bond where they have not entered into a written agreement

20 penalty points

s.147

A caravan park owner must not demand or accept a bond that exceeds 28 days of rent

20 penalty points

s.148(1)

If a resident pays a bond the caravan park owner must, before commencement of occupation, give the resident two signed copies of a Condition Report

10 penalty units

s.150(1)

A caravan park owner must not require rent payable more than 14 days in advance

20 penalty units

s.150(2)

A caravan park owner must not require a hiring charge more than 28 days in advance

20 penalty units

s.151(1)

Written receipt for rent or hiring charge to be provided immediately if paid in person or within five days if requested (and not paid in person)

10 penalty units

s.151(2)

When rent or hiring charges are not paid person and the resident does not request a copy, the caravan park owner must keep records of payments for 12 months

10 penalty units

s.151(2A)

Where a resident requests a copy within 12 months the owner must provide a copy within five business days

10 penalty units

s.160

A person must not take or dispose of a resident’s goods as a result of rent or hiring charges owing

20 penalty units

s.166(1)

Caravan park owner must not seek overpayment for utility charges

20 penalty units

s.182

On the day that a resident enters into occupation of a caravan park, the caravan park owner must give the resident a written statement of their rights and duties, and a copy of the caravan park rules

20 penalty units

s.183(1)

On the day that a resident enters into occupation of a caravan park, the caravan park owner must give the resident a written statement setting out additional rent, hiring charges, fees and scale of commissions

20 penalty units

s.183(2)

A caravan park owner must give a resident seven days notice of any proposed changes to additional rent, hiring charges, fees and scale of commissions

10 penalty units

s.184(1)

Caravan park owner must provide in writing their full name, address and (where there is no agent) emergency telephone number

10 penalty units

s.184(2)

If an agent acts for a caravan park owner, that owner must provide the resident in writing with the agent’s name and address, whether the agent can authorise urgent repairs, and if so the agent's phone number for urgent repairs

10 penalty units

s.184(3)

The caravan park owner must notify the resident in writing of any changes to contact details within seven days of the change

10 penalty units

s.186(1)

The caravan park owner must notify the resident of any changes to the caravan park rules within seven days of the change

10 penalty units

s.198(1)

A caravan park owner must not enter into an agreement to sell a caravan unless they have provided a scale of commission for the sale

10 penalty units

s.198(2)

A caravan park owner must not obstruct or hinder the sale of a caravan park

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.206A

A caravan park owner, caravan owner or owner's agent must not, without reasonable excuse, enter a resident's site or caravan except in accordance with the Act

10 penalty units

s.206E(2)

A site owner must not enter into a site agreement with a site tenant that is not in writing

60 penalty units

s.206I(1)

A site owner must give prospective site tenants a copy of the site agreement and at least 20 days to consider it before giving them a copy to sign

20 penalty units

s.206N

A person must not demand or accept a second bond for a subsequent site agreement

20 penalty units

s.2060(1)

If a site tenant pays a bond, the site owner must, before commencement of occupation, give the site tenant two signed copies of a Condition Report

10 penalty units

s.2060

A person must not require a site tenant to obtain a guarantee for performance of the site tenant's duties if the site tenant pays a bond

20 penalty units

s.206T

A site owner must not require a site tenant to pay rent more than one month in advance

20 penalty units

s.206U(1)

Written receipt for rent to be provided immediately if paid in person or within five business days if requested (and not paid in person)

10 penalty units

s.206U(2)

Where rent is not paid in person and the site tenant does not request a receipt, the site owner must retain records of all payments for 12 months

10 penalty units

s.206U(3)

Where a site tenant requests a copy of a rent receipt within 12 months, the site owner must provide a copy within five business days

10 penalty units

s.206ZC

A person must not take or dispose of a site tenant's goods as a result of rent owing

20 penalty units

s.206ZH

Site owner must not seek overpayment for utility charges

20 penalty units

s.206ZR(1)

Site owner must give site tenant a copy of rights and duties in prescribed form

20 penalty units

s.206ZR(2)

Site owner must give site tenant a copy of rights and duties in prescribed form

20 penalty units

s.206ZS(1)

Site owner must give site tenant Part 4A site plans

20 penalty units

s.206ZX(1)

Site owner must provide in writing their full name, address and (where there is no agent), emergency telephone number

10 penalty units

s.206ZX(2)

If an agent acts for a site owner, that site owner must provide the site tenant in writing with the agent's name and address, whether the agent can authorise urgent repairs, and if so, the agent's phone number for urgent repairs

10 penalty units

s.206ZX(3)

The site owner must notify the site tenant in writing of any changes to contact details within seven days of the change

10 penalty units

s.206ZZ(1)

A site owner must give a site tenant at least seven days written notice of any proposed change in the Part 4A park rules

20 penalty units

s.206ZZ(2)

A site owner must consult with site tenants in respect of a proposed change to the Part 4A park rules

20 penalty units

s.206ZZC(1)

A site owner must not unreasonably interfere with a site tenant's right to participate in a site tenants' committee

20 penalty units

s.206ZZG(1)

A site owner must not demand to receive a fee for consent to assignment or sub-letting the site

20 penalty units

s.206ZZG(2)

A site owner must not refuse to consent to assignment or sub-letting on the ground that the site tenant has refused to pay a fee for consent

20 penalty units

s.206ZZH(2)

A site owner must not require a site tenant to enter into an agreement whereby the site owner sells a Part 4A dwelling on behalf of the site tenant

40 penalty units

s.206ZZH(3)

A site owner selling a Part 4A dwelling on behalf of a site tenant must not charge a commission unless it has been disclosed as required

10 penalty units

s.206ZZH(4)

A site owner must not obstruct or hinder the sale of a Part 4A dwelling by a site tenant

10 penalty units

s.206ZZP

A site owner or agent must not, without reasonable excuse, enter a site tenant's site or dwelling except in accordance with the Act

10 penalty units

s.229(1)

A landlord or agent must not compel or attempt to compel the tenant to vacate except in accordance with the Act

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.229(2)

A landlord or agent must not, except in accordance with the Act, obtain or attempt to obtain possession of the rented premises by entering them, unless there are reasonable grounds to believe the tenant has abandoned the premises

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.264(1)

Where the landlord gives a tenant a Notice to Vacate due to demolition, change in use to business purposes, occupation by the landlord's family or sale of the premises; the premises may not be let until six months have passed

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.273(1)

Except in accordance with the Act, a person must not require/force or attempt to require/force a resident to vacate, or take or attempt to take possession of a room in which a resident resides

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.273(2)

Except in accordance with the Act, a person must not do certain specified things for the purposes of causing a resident to abandon a room

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.275(1)

A resident who vacates a room without giving notice must pay rent for the lesser of two days after vacating, or until another resident takes up occupancy of the room

10 penalty units

s.287(1)

Where the rooming house owner gives a resident a Notice to Vacate due to repairs, reconstruction or demolition, the room may not be rented until six months have passed

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.295

Except in accordance with the Act, a person must not force a resident to vacate, take possession of, restrict access to, interfere with the peace of, or restrict services or facilities to a site

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.298(1)

A resident who vacates a site without giving notice must pay rent for the lesser of seven days after vacating, or until another resident takes up occupancy of the site.

10 penalty units

s.298(2)

A resident who vacates a caravan without giving notice must pay the hiring charge for the lesser of seven days after vacating, or until another resident takes up occupancy of the caravan.

10 penalty units

s.313(1)

Where the caravan park owner gives a resident a Notice to Vacate due to sale of caravan or change of park use, the site may not be rented until six months have passed

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.313(2)

Where the caravan park owner gives a resident a Notice to Vacate due to sale of caravan or occupation by caravan owner, the caravan may not be rented until six months have passed.

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.317K(1)

A person must not require, compel or attempt to compel a site tenant to vacate except in accordance with the Act

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.317K(2)

Except in accordance with the Act, a person must not exclude a site tenant from, or restrict or attempt to restrict access to, a Part 4A dwelling, site or park

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.317K(3)

Except in accordance with the Act, a person must not interfere with the peace, comfort or privacy of a site tenant for the purposes of causing the site tenant to abandon the Part 4A site

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.317K(4)

Except in accordance with the Act, a person must not do certain specified things for the purposes of causing a site tenant to abandon a Part 4A site

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.358(1)

A person removed from a rooming house under warrant must not re-enter and take possession of a room

60 penalty units

s.358(2)

A person removed from a site or caravan park under warrant must not re-enter and take possession of a site or caravan

60 penalty units

s.358(3)

A person removed from a Part 4A site under warrant must not re-enter and take possession of the site

20 penalty units

s.368A

A manager of managed premises must not give a notice to leave or purported notice to leave without reasonable grounds

60 penalty units

s.369

A person given Notice to Leave a managed property must not remain on the premises after receiving a copy of the notice

20 penalty units

s.372

A resident whose tenancy agreement has been suspended must not re-enter the premises during that suspension

20 penalty units

s.373

Where a notice to Leave has been issued the manager must also give the principal registrar written notice by no later than the end of the next business day

60 penalty units

s.377(1)

Where a tenancy agreement is suspended, a landlord of rented premises in a managed high-density building must not allow a party to lease or occupy the premises during that suspension

60 penalty units for a person, 30 penalty units for a body corporate

s.377(2)

Where a residency right is suspended, a rooming house owner must not allow a party to occupy the premises during that suspension

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.377(3)

Where a residency right is suspended, a caravan park owner must not allow a party to occupy the premises during that suspension

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.377(3A)

Where a site agreement is suspended, a site owner must not allow a party to occupy the Part 4A site during that suspension

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.382(2)

Where a person wishes to reclaim documents and pays associated costs, the owner of the premises must not refuse to give the documents to that person

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.389(2)

If a person who has a lawful right to stored goods pays the requisite costs, the owner of premises must not refuse to give the goods to the person

20 penalty units

s.405(1)

A landlord must, at the time a bond is paid, complete and sign a Bond Lodgement form and give the form to the tenant to sign

10 penalty units

s.405(4)

The landlord must give the tenant a copy of the Bond Lodgement form

10 penalty units

s.406

The landlord must, within 10 days after a bond is received, lodge that bond with the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority (RTBA)

60 penalty units

s.412(5A)

A landlord must not request or obtain a tenant's signature on a bond claim form if the application form does not specify the amount of bond to be refunded and the apportionment

20 penalty units

s.424(1)

If a landlord assigns or transfers their rights under an agreement they must notify the RTBA of the assignment or transfer of a bond

20 penalty units

s.424(3)

Where the landlord transfers their rights they must provide the tenant with a copy of a notice with the information prescribed in Regulation 22

20 penalty units

s.425(1)

If a tenant assigns or transfers their rights under an agreement they must notify the RTBA of the assignment or transfer of a bond

20 penalty units

s.428

The tenant must pay rent and not use their bond as rent

20 penalty units

s.439C(2)

If a landlord usually uses residential tenancy databases for deciding an application, the landlord must give an applicant written notice of certain information

20 penalty units

s.439D(2)

If a landlord uses a residential tenancy database for checking personal information about an applicant and the applicant is in the database, the landlord must give the applicant certain information about the listing

20 penalty units

s.439F(1)

A landlord or database operator must not list personal information about a person in a residential tenancy database unless the landlord or operator has given the person a free copy of the information, or taken reasonable steps to disclose the information to the person

20 penalty units

s.439F(2)

A landlord or database operator must not list personal information about a person in a residential tenancy database unless the person has been given at least 14 days to make submissions in response

20 penalty units

s.439F(3)

A landlord or database operator must not list personal information about a person in a residential tenancy database unless the landlord or database operator has considered any submissions the person has made in response

20 penalty units

s.439G(2)

A landlord must, within seven days, give written notice to a database operator if the landlord becomes aware that information in a residential tenancy database is inaccurate, incomplete, ambiguous or out of date

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.439G(3)

If a landlord gives a database operator written notice that information in a residential tenancy database is inaccurate, incomplete, ambiguous or out of date, the landlord must keep a copy of the notice for one year

10 penalty units

s.439H(2)

If a landlord gives a database operator notice that information in a residential tenancy database must be amended or removed, the database operator must do so within 14 days

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.439I(1)

A landlord who lists personal information about a person in a residential tenancy database must give a copy of the information to the person if asked by them

20 penalty units

s.439I(2)

A database operator must, if asked by a person whose personal information is in the operator's residential tenancy database, give a copy of the information to the person

20 penalty units

s.439K(1)

A database operator must not keep personal information about a particular person in the operator's residential tenancy database for longer than three years (or earlier if required under the national privacy principles)

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.480(1)

A person to whom a VCAT determination under the Act applies, must comply with the determination

20 penalty units and 5 penalty units for each day the non-compliance continues (up to max 60 penalty units)

s.501

A person must not make false representations as to provisions of the Act, a tenancy agreement or site agreement term, or matter affecting rights or duties under the Act or a tenancy agreement or site agreement

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.502

A person must not persuade or attempt to persuade a person not to exercise rights or take proceedings under the Act

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.503

A person must not aid, abet, counsel or procure the commission of an offence against the Act

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.504

A person must not knowingly give false or misleading information under the Act

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.505

A person must not demand or accept from a tenant, resident or site tenant, penalties for non-compliance, other than rent or other amounts provided for under the Act

60 penalty units for a person, 300 penalty units for a body corporate

s.505A

An owner/operator of residential premises must not make false representations with respect to formal affiliation with a school or education/training institution

300 penalty units

s.505B

An owner/operator of residential premises that are affiliated with a school or education/training institution must display notice about affiliation

10 penalty units

Last updated: 24/04/2017

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