This video story provides legal information about renting for people in all states and territories except New South Wales and Queensland.
It is the part of a series of videos about the law for people who have recently arrived in Australia.
Renting Student Kit -211KB PDF File (2 pages)
Renting Teacher Kit -191KB PDF File (2 pages)
Transcript of Video
Nan and her husband, Saw Paw, are looking at a unit to rent.
Nan: This unit is perfect for us!
Saw Paw: Yeah, it’s good. Let’s go back to the agent and fill in the forms.
They return to the rental agency.
Agent: OK, so sign this lease. You have to pay the rent in advance plus four weeks rent for the bond. If the property is not damaged at the end of the lease you will get the bond back. And you need to fill in this condition report. It lists all the damage that already exists. Check it is right so you will not have to pay for damage you did not do.
Saw Paw: OK, let’s go to our new home.
They return to the unit.
Nan: Mmm... everything seems to be working OK.
Saw Paw: Ohh look, there’s a cracked tile in the bathroom.
He records the damage on the condition report.
Nan: Ahha, and a cigarette burn in the carpet! Write that down.
Four weeks later.
Nan: Saw Paw, the oven isn’t working.
Saw Paw: Yeah, when I tried to cook the chicken on the weekend the oven kept turning off.
Saw Paw telephones the rental agency.
Saw Paw: Good morning. This is Saw Paw Kunoo from Unit 2 /25 William Road. The oven in our unit isn’t working. Can someone come to fix it please?
Two months later.
Saw Paw: They still haven’t come to fix it!
Nan: Call them again. We can’t bake or roast anything.
Saw Paw: Ohhh, they might kick us out if we complain.
At the end of the lease Saw and Nan move out of the unit. Saw returns the keys to the rental agency.
Saw Paw: Here are the keys for our unit. Will you send us the bond?
Receptionist: We’ll check the condition of the unit first, then we’ll contact you.
Saw Paw: Thanks.
Nan: We need that bond back. We need that money now.
Some time later.
Nan: I can’t believe it! The landlord said we’re not getting the bond back.
Saw Paw: How come?
Nan: They said we broke the oven and the carpet is dirty.
Saw Paw: WE broke the oven! I don’t believe it.
Nan and Saw Paw go to Legal Aid for some advice.
Lawyer: Well, the landlord should have fixed your oven immediately. You could have written down the problem in a letter to the landlord, and kept a copy yourself to show that you told them. You could have asked for some free help to do this from a tenancy organisation or legal service. If your landlord won’t make repairs you can get free legal help.
Saw Paw: I didn’t want to complain. He might have kicked us out.
Lawyer: You have rights - they can’t kick you out just because you have asked for repairs. They need a court order. There are laws to protect tenants.
Saw Paw: So is there anything we can do now?
Lawyer: I’ll help you apply to get your bond back.
Saw Paw: Oh thank you, we really need the money.
Some time later.
Nan: We got our bond back.
Saw Paw: Lucky we got some help.