When you rent a home, it must be reasonably clean and available on the day you move in. If the property is not vacant or not in a reasonably clean condition, you do not have to move in, or pay rent, until this is fixed.
Before you move in, the landlord or agent should give you two signed copies of a condition report specifying the state or condition of the home. You should review it, and the property, within three days of moving in. If necessary, make any additions to the form stating that you disagree with the report (either wholly or in part). You must then return one copy to the landlord and keep the second copy of the report. If possible, take photos of the property before you move in to show its condition.
If you do move in, and you have to pay to clean the property, make sure you fill out a condition report stating so.
If the landlord does not arrange for the property to be cleaned to a reasonable standard, you can serve them with a Breach of duty notice. If you cannot agree with them on what constitutes a reasonably clean condition, either of you can apply for a ruling from the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).
As Victoria's consumer affairs regulator, we help landlords, agents and tenants understand their rights and responsibilities.