On the 13th of July 2021 the Australian and NSW Government announced a new COVID-19 support scheme which will implement temporary measures to support both tenants and landlords. It will not only financially help the parties to a lease but also help reduce community movement and the potential spread of the virus. The summary below is on the specific announcements made by the NSW Treasurer in the media conference with the Prime Minister – the finer details of the specific laws are yet to be released however more information can be found at https://www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au/resource-library/publications/coronavirus-covid-19/property/moratorium.
60 day freeze on evictions
Tenants who can’t pay their rent in full because they are impacted by the recent COVID-19 outbreak can't be evicted between 13 July and 11 September 2021.
Financial support for landlords
Up to $1500 per tenancy will be available for landlords who agree to reduce rent for COVID-19 impacted tenants.
Advice for tenants
If you’re a tenant impacted by COVID-19 and were unable to pay some of your rent or other charges during the moratorium period, you should contact your landlord to try to agree on a plan to repay that money as soon as possible.
Advice for landlords
All landlords must be prepared to negotiate a repayment plan with the tenant, bearing in mind that the Government will offset any rent lost up to $1500.00 per tenancy.
Commercial and Retail Tenancies
It was also announced that there would be a requirement for commercial and retail landlords and tenants to attempt mediation before any action could be taken to terminate and evict a tenant for non payment of rent during the current lockdown period. We expect to see similar laws introduced that were previously adopted under the National Mandatory Code of Conduct for Commercial and Retail Leases last year when the pandemic first commenced in March 2020. Furthermore, it is expected that commercial, retail and residential landlords liable for land tax will be eligible for a land tax concession where they reduce the rent of their tenant as a result of the current lockdown.
The contents of this publication are for reference purposes only. This publication does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Specific legal advice should always be sought separately before taking any action based on this publication.