The rental market has changed significantly over the last 20 years. Growing numbers of Australians are delaying purchasing a home and renting for longer.
The review of the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (RTA) was a critical part of the Victorian Government’s plan for fairer, safer housing to ensure that regulation of Victoria’s rental sector is appropriate to meet the needs and expectations of tenants and landlords, now and into the future.
The review examined how well Victoria’s rental laws work in the modern rental market, and aimed to balance the rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords.
The review process
Public consultation was a significant feature of the review, commencing with the release in June 2015 of the consultation paper ‘Laying the Groundwork’. This was followed by a series of six public consultation papers covering a broad spectrum of rental issues – from security of tenure to protections for people living in caravan parks and residential parks. In January 2017, ‘Heading for Home’, an options paper outlining the outcomes of public consultation, was released for final discussion.
During the review, more than 4,800 public comments were submitted by a range of people and organisations.
To view the consultation papers and public submissions, visit the Fairer Safer Housing page on the Engage Victoria website.
Drawing on stakeholder submissions, broader consultation across government, as well as the results of independent market research, a package of more than 130 reforms to the RTA was developed. The reforms are set out in the Residential Tenancies Amendment Act 2018, which passed the Victorian Parliament in September 2018. The Amendment Act is available under the ‘Victorian Statute Book’ menu heading on the Victorian Legislation and Parliamentary Documents website.
The changes will come into force progressively, and further consultation will be undertaken where necessary to develop guidelines and other prescribed information supporting the new laws. We will provide updates on the new laws as implementation progresses.
To view all the reforms, visit the Fairer Safer Housing page on the Engage Victoria website.