The Greens have today welcomed news that a range of renters rights will come into effect sooner – but called on the Government to take this further by realising minimum standards in rental properties.
Today the Canberra Times reports that “sweeping changes to Canberra’s tenancies laws that will make it easier to keep pets and make minor modifications in rental properties will come into effect earlier than expected.”
However, the Government is still lagging behind on realising minimum standards in rental properties.
“For almost a decade, the Greens have pushed for minimum rental standards for Canberra without the support of either of the major parties. For almost a decade, these efforts have stalled. The Greens think renters deserve a better deal,” ACT Greens Housing spokesperson Caroline Le Couteur said today.
“Finally, thanks to the latest Climate Change Strategy recently released by my Greens colleague Shane Rattenbury, we now have indications that this will change. We urge the Government to get this work underway, to ensure renters do get a better deal.
“The Climate Change Strategy also commits the Government to introduce legislation from 2021 to deliver staged minimum energy performance requirements for Canberra rentals.
“Landlords and real estate agents will also have to disclose the energy performance of an advertised rental as it goes to market – so that Canberra renters can find out how energy (in)efficient a potential home is, long before renters sign the lease.
Ms Le Couteur also welcomed additional work in the Climate Change Strategy that will get renters a better deal.
This includes expand the Actsmart Home Energy Program to provide free, tailored in-home energy assessments for Canberra renters – delivering more practical advice for renters to save on your energy bills and make your home more energy efficient.
- In 2011, Greens MLA Shane Rattenbury brought forward a Bill in the Assembly to “set minimum standards for properties that are made available for rent in the ACT, including public housing where the government is the landlord. Neither of the major parties backed the Bill.
- In February 2019, Ms Le Couteur brought forward an amendment to the Residential Tenancies Act that included minimum standards for rental properties.