Rules for metropolitan Melbourne

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Metropolitan Melbourne is now in the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening. This page sets out rights and responsibilities in line with current health advice.

Read more about the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening for Metropolitan Melbourne at Coronavirus (COVID-19) Victoria.

See Rules for regional Victoria or Renting laws and support at Coronavirus (COVID-19) Victoria

Property

This section covers rules on residential property inspections and auctions. For other information about renting, view Renting rules and support at Coronavirus (COVID-19) Victoria.

Metropolitan Melbourne is now in the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening. This includes changes to real estate services.

For more information about the Second Step, visit Coronavirus (COVID-19) reopening roadmap: metropolitan Melbourne at Coronavirus (COVID-19) Victoria.

Auctions

Under the Second Step, residential property auctions can only be conducted remotely.

Inspections

Inspections can be conducted for residential property or display homes for rental or sale, if it is a pre-arranged, private appointment and for no longer than 15 minutes.

The people attending a private property inspection are limited to only one agent and one prospective purchaser or tenant. The prospective purchaser or tenant can be accompanied by:

  • one other person from the same household or their intimate partner
  • their children, if under 18 years old and they cannot access any child care assistance.

Current residents cannot be at the property at the same time as the inspection. A resident is permitted to leave home so that the inspection can take place.

An inspection cannot take place if the resident is in quarantine or self-isolation in the property. If tenants are immuno-compromised or in another vulnerable cohort, a virtual inspection may be an appropriate alternative.

You can leave your home to attend a pre-arranged property inspection but you must not leave your home for longer than 2 hours in total.

If you live in metropolitan Melbourne you cannot travel to regional Victoria to inspect a property for sale or lease. If you live in regional Victoria you cannot travel to metropolitan Melbourne to inspect a property for sale or lease. You can travel beyond 5km to inspect a property for sale or lease.

Anyone attending a property should maintain physical distancing, by keeping 1.5 metres away from others, and must wear a face mask unless they have a lawful reason not to.

It is important to practise good hygiene, with regular hand washing and hand sanitising. If you feel unwell, even if symptoms are mild, you must get tested and stay home.

Attending a residential property for other reasons

An agent and one other service provider can enter a residential property to conduct any necessary property marketing, sales and rental activities that cannot be done remotely; for example to take photos or record videos.

On-site activities (such as inspections and other rental services) are also allowed:

  • if urgent or emergency maintenance is required
  • for services related to property settlement; for example bank valuations and building, pest or final inspections
  • end-of-lease services (including exit inspections, completing condition reports, cleaning and removalists).

Any person attending a property should maintain physical distancing by keeping 1.5 metres away from others, and must wear a face mask unless they have a lawful reason not to.

Inspections by vendors or landlords

A vendor or a landlord can enter a property to inspect it if they have served a valid notice to enter the premises under the Residential Tenancies Act 1997.

Ending a lease

Tenants can give notice of intention to vacate in metropolitan Melbourne, but landlords cannot issue a Notice to vacate. A landlord may seek a Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) order to have a tenancy terminated on the grounds that a tenant has breached their obligations under the Residential Tenancies Act or the tenancy agreement.

Moving

You can use a removalist to help when moving. You should also take extra steps to stay safe, including wearing a face mask, maintaining physical distance of 1.5 metres from other people whenever possible, and practising good hygiene.

You can only help someone in another household to move if they need care and support due to age, infirmity, disability, or because of their health.

Licensed and registered businesses

This section sets out rights and responsibilities for people and businesses in metropolitan Melbourne, which is now in the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening. Due to the changing nature of circumstances in Victoria, we will update this information as often as possible.

For information about areas outside metropolitan Melbourne, go to Rules for regional Victoria.

Under the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening there are changes to real estate services in metropolitan Melbourne.

Real estate services are a permitted industry for services related to property settlement or commencement or end of lease and for auctions, inspections and marketing activities described in the Property section above.

An estate agent arranging an inspection or access to a residential property or display home under the Second Step rules must ensure that:

  • they confirm before the inspection or access that all people attending the inspection and any current residents of the property are not displaying any coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms or self-isolating or under quarantine
  • any current residents of the property are not present during the inspection
  • the property is well ventilated (including opening external and internal doors and windows at all times during the inspection)
  • sanitiser is available at all inspections and require its use before anyone enters the property
  • all people attending the property wear face masks at all times
  • the touching of surfaces within the property is minimised, by turning on lights and opening all cupboards, drawers, windows and doors, and any surfaces touched are disinfected after and between inspections
  • they keep records of everyone attending, including staff, for contact tracing purposes – their name, phone number, date and time.

A person cannot travel from regional Victoria to Melbourne to attend an auction or inspection.

Real Estate offices must stay closed with all staff working remotely wherever possible.

Employers that require their staff to attend a worksite to undertake emergency maintenance work or to support a permitted service or industry must issue a Permitted Worker Permit to their employees – this is the employer’s responsibility. They must also have a COVIDSafe Plan in place. To read more about permitted work sites operating under the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening, visit Victoria’s restriction levels on the Department of Health and Human Services website. To read more about the business support available, visit Coronavirus (COVID-19) business support - Business Victoria.

 

If your association is scheduled to hold a meeting in metropolitan Melbourne, you must follow the restrictions on social gatherings.

Attending an incorporated association meeting is not a permitted reason to leave home nor can you gather in public places with more than five people from up to two households outdoors. You are also not permitted to have visitors to your house unless they are providing care or essential services.

For information on restrictions on social gatherings in Melbourne under the Second Step, visit Victoria's restriction levels - Department of Health and Human Services.

Holding a meeting

If you need to hold a meeting, you can:

  • use a teleconference, videoconference or other means of electronic communication.
    The Associations Incorporation Reform Act 2012 (the Act) permits members to take part in general meetings by using technology that allows members to clearly and simultaneously communicate with each other, regardless of the incorporated association's rules about this. The Act also permits meetings of the committee of an incorporated association to be conducted by use of technology that allows members to clearly and simultaneously communicate with each other.
  • use proxy voting. You must use a standard form to proxy vote if the rules of the incorporated association require you to do so. Members must be given a copy of the form with the notice of the AGM/Special General Meeting. A person acting as a proxy must act honestly and in good faith and exercise due care and diligence
  • apply for an extension of time to hold the AGM. The Registrar is currently granting three-month extensions and waiving the usual fee. To seek an extension, complete our Extension of time to hold an AGM or lodge financial statements form (Word, 97 KB) and send it to cav.registration@justice.vic.gov.au.

Metropolitan Melbourne is now in the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening.

If your co-operative is scheduled to hold a meeting (subject to its rules), you should choose an alternative approach. You must adhere to the requirements of the rules of the co-operative and the Co-operatives National Law (Victoria) (the CNL) if you:

  • use alternative means to hold meetings including teleconference or video conference. The CNL permits directors to hold board meetings, or transact co-operative business outside physical meetings by the use of technology that allows the board to clearly and simultaneously communicate and share documents with each other. Meetings of the board can also be held by circulation of papers without the board members being physically present together. Circulation of papers can occur by use of technology.
  • use proxy voting or postal ballot. The rules of some co-operatives permit the use of proxy voting and/or postal ballot. It is strongly advised that prior to acting under any of these provisions, a co-operative seeks independent legal advice to ensure the board is acting in accordance with its regulatory requirements.
  • apply for an extension of time to hold your AGM. The Registrar will approve an extension of up to three months and waive any usual fee. To apply, complete the Application for extension or shortening of time form (Word, 128 KB) and submit to cav.registration@justice.vic.gov.au.

Annual general meetings

Metropolitan Melbourne is now in the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening and this impacts on annual general meetings (AGMs) and other meetings.

Under the restrictions you must Stay at Home and are only allowed to leave home for permitted reasons, with strict rules on gathering limits. Attending an Annual General Meeting is not a permitted reason to leave home, nor are you allowed to gather in public places with more than five people from up to two households and outdoors, or have visitors to your home unless it is to deliver care or essential services.

Holding a meeting

You must hold the meeting by teleconference or other remote technology.

Some matters do not need an AGM and can be resolved by ballot. You can conduct a ballot by:

  • post
  • telephone
  • internet
  • fax
  • other electronic communication.

Owners corporations should also consider what powers and functions they can delegate to the committee and/or manager. This can ensure effective administration between meetings.

Owners corporations should consider limiting the use of their power to decide that certain matters can only be dealt with at a general meeting. This will help provide flexibility for decision-making while physical distancing is needed.

For general information, view Meetings and committees.

Shared facilities in apartments and multi-dwelling properties

Information for residents and managers of apartments and multi-dwelling properties with shared facilities is available at Apartments and multi-dwelling properties – coronavirus (COVID-19) on the Department of Health and Human Services website.

Metropolitan Melbourne is now in the Second Step of the roadmap for reopening and this impacts annual general meetings (AGM) and other general meetings.

Under the restrictions you must Stay at Home and are only allowed to leave home for permitted reasons, with strict rules on gathering limits. Attending an AGM is not a permitted reason to leave home. Nor are you allowed to gather in public places with more than five people from up to two households and outdoors, or have visitors to your home unless it is to deliver care or essential services.

Holding meetings

If you cannot postpone a meeting, you can meet remotely via a:

  • teleconference
  • videoconference.

Managers should contact residents as soon as possible to agree on a preferred approach.

A person who owns, controls or operates a brothel or sex-on-premises venue in a restricted area must not operate that facility.

บุคคลผู้เป็นเจ้าของ ควบคุม หรือ ดำเนินกิจการสถานโสเภณี หรือ สถานที่ที่ใช้ร่วมเพศในพื้นที่หวงห้าม จะต้องหยุดดำเนินการดังกล่าว

제한된 지역에서 브로텔 혹은 건물 내 성매매 사업소를 소유, 관리 혹은 운영하는 사람은 그 시설을 운영하지 않아야 합니다.

在限制区内拥有、控制或经营妓院或性服务场所的人不得经营该场所。

Products and services

Most Victorian consumers and businesses do the right thing. We urge buyers and sellers to consider the impact of excessive pricing and panic buying. We support measures to ensure supply and demand of products is fair for everyone.

Consumers and businesses must comply with the requirements about wearing face coverings and shop for essential items. You must not travel more than 5 kilometres from your home, unless the nearest provider is more than 5 kilometres from your home.

We encourage all businesses to set fair prices during this emergency.

Businesses can legally set their own prices, but must not mislead consumers about the reason for increased pricing. Excessive pricing by a business may be found to be unconscionable if the product is critical to help save or protect vulnerable consumers. This would make the high prices illegal. See our information about Price rip-offs.

Private sales are not covered by Australian Consumer Law. Private sellers can legally list face masks, hand sanitiser and toilet paper on classified sites for significantly more than they sell for in stores.

We urge consumers not to pay exorbitant amounts to people reselling important sanitary products. Retailers are aiming to keep shelves stocked with important products for those who need them.

If an event cannot go ahead due to coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, this may be a ‘frustrated contract’. This means it is impossible to carry out the contract due to events beyond the control of all parties. In this situation, consumers are entitled to a refund for any services not provided. Organisers may deduct reasonable expenses they have already incurred. Organisers should have clear refund policies and processes, to ensure they meet their obligations.

We recommend buying tickets from ‘authorised sellers’. Tickets sold by unauthorised sellers are not always legitimate. This could make it difficult to get a refund in the event of a cancellation. If purchasing online, use a secure connection.

Insurance may provide further protection for consumers who cannot attend an event due to coronavirus (COVID-19). Check any exclusions carefully, as many policies do not cover ‘known events’.

Many public sporting events cannot go ahead due to coronavirus (COVID-19). A consumer’s first step should be to check any membership or ticket terms and conditions for the seller’s refund policy.

With sports memberships, a range of services may be offered as part of that membership. Each club should clarify which services are being cancelled because they can no longer be provided. This may be a ‘frustrated contract’. In this situation, consumers are entitled to a refund for any services not provided. Clubs may deduct reasonable expenses they have already incurred.

There is a significant increase in malicious activity surrounding coronavirus (COVID-19), including misinformation made to appear to be from trusted sources such as government agencies and media outlets.

Protect yourself against online scammers, by following these quick tips:

  • Do not reveal personal or financial information in emails, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information.
  • Use trusted sources—such as legitimate, government websites—for up-to-date, fact-based information about coronavirus (COVID-19): dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus
  • Verify a charity’s authenticity before making donations: acnc.gov.au/charity

You can report a potential scam via our Report a scam page. Learn more about current coronavirus (COVID-19) scams from the Scamwatch website.

For accurate information about coronavirus (COVID-19), use the: