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Laws to Consider When Considering Tenants at Your Investment Property

As a property owner, it is your decision as to who moves into your investment property. Your property manager will process the application and provide information on the findings but ultimately it is the landlord who decides who will be residing at the property. It is your decision to make as to how many people you wish to live at your property, or if you would allow smoking, or pets within the premises. However, you must bear in mind that your agent is unable to follow illegal instructions that may relate to discrimination, pets and smoking.

  • Discrimination
  • Pets
  • Smoking

Discrimination

It is stated in the Queensland Discrimination Law (Anti-Discrimination Act 1991) that it is against the law to discriminate against people because of their:

  • sexuality
  • relationship or parental status
    – whether they are single, married, divorced, widowed or living with someone as if they were married (de facto, including same sex de facto)
    – whether or not they have children
  • race
  • family responsibilities
  • age (whether young or old)
  • gender identity
  • political activity or belief
  • religious activity or belief
  • impairment
    – physical
    – intellectual
    – psychiatric or mental disability
    – illness or injury (whether they are HIV+, uses a guide dog, wheelchair or some other remedial device)
  • trade union activity
  • association with or relation to someone who has any of these listed attributes or personal characteristics
  • pregnancy
  • lawful sexual activity

On Pets

As a landlord, it is your right to decide whether to accept or refuse a pet inside your investment property. Word of advice though, if your property is a house with proper fencing, you might want to consider allowing pets in the property. Try to look at the bigger picture, these types of properties are a hot commodity to a lot of prospective renters, thus broadening your target market by making it more appealing to pet owners.

However, if you are unsure about the idea of allowing pets inside the property, know that you can request a special term for tenants to follow. In it, you can specify whether you want the pet/s kept outside only, or if you would allow the pets inside as well.

On Smoking

Section 183 of the RTRA Act (Quiet Enjoyment) states that tenants are entitled to reasonable peace, comfort and privacy, and to be able to make full use of their rented property. However, oftentimes, tenants assume that it includes the right to smoke outside the property, unless you add a special term in your tenancy agreement that there is to be no smoking inside the property. As a lessor, you have the right to do so.

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