Labor’s rental reforms to damage local property market

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Local real estate agents have slammed proposed rental reforms by the Palaszczuk Labor government, labelling them unbalanced and an attack on mum and dad investors.

Member for Kawana, Jarrod Bleijie, who today met with a group of concerned stakeholders, said some of the laws under the proposed reform include the loss of the property owner’s right to refuse pets; the ability for tenants to make modifications to the property without the owner’s consent; and the proposed abolishment of an owner’s right to not renew a tenancy agreement at the end of its agreed term.

“These reforms are unbalanced, heavy-handed and will totally erode the rights of property owners,” Mr Bleijie said.

“Keeping pets and making modifications to homes should be undertaken by agreement between owners and tenants.

Mr Bleijie said a large percentage of property investors on the Sunshine Coast were local mum and dad investors, who had worked hard their entire life to afford an investment property.

“Creating laws that removes the ability for property owners to make decisions and have control over their asset that they’ve worked so hard for is an erosion of owners rights.

“These reforms are also bad news for tenants – industry has said that the cost of these changes could drive annual rental costs up by as much as $5000 a year or $100 a week and could be the catalyst for owners to sell their properties or pull them from the rental market completely.”

The Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) has estimated that even if only 5% of investors leave the rental market as a result of the reforms, it could lead to a $5000 increase in rents.

Mr Bleijie said over 28.5% of residents in his state electorate of Kawana are tenants which underlined the importance of ensuring a sensible and balanced approach that respects the rights of both property owners as well as tenants.

“Our local property market depends on having a steady supply of investors to ensure rental and housing affordability is maintained,” he said.

“The last thing the Sunshine Coast needs is mum and dad property investors removing their homes from the rental market, creating an environment of less supply and higher demand for rental properties – rents would skyrocket and families would be left homeless.

“These changes deserve proper scrutiny and analysis and the consultation period must be extended by the Palaszczuk government beyond 28 December.

“No one disputes that a review of rental laws is appropriate, but Labor’s proposed changes go way too far.”

 
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