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How The Renting Game Varies from State and Territory.


We may call ourselves the lucky country, but if you’re renter, it really depends on which state or territory you live in. That’s because here in Australia we have eight sets of rules for tenants and landlords, governed by eight different states and territories. Yes there are similarities, but all distinct in their own way, so being aware of these different tenancy legislations is crucial if you’re planning to invest or move interstate.


With the number of Australian households whom rent increasing to 31.4 percent, due to the big property boom, we now see more than 1.5 million households now own properties they don’t even live in.


Founder of Fresh Property Management Group, and real estate expert Braeden Tournier, explains that even with a federal government, each state retains the power to have its own constitution and legislature, resulting in eight sets of legislation for residential tenancies. Tournier elaborates tenant holding deposits as an example, where in Victoria the holding deposit must be returned, in ACT a holding fee cannot be accepted, and in Northern Territory anything goes. This goes to show how each state and territory vary, and the following categories should be explored.


Stamp Duty

It’s understandable that each state has different financial requirements and expenses. So how it collects taxes, such as stamp duty and land tax will vary, and it does. Using the March 2016 figures from ABS, the mean value of dwellings in Australia is $613,900. Buying a residential investment property at this price, the stamp duty ranges from $19,155.00 if you bought a property in the ACT to $31,904.00 in VIC (This is based on buying an established property as an investment. ACT=$19,155.00, NSW=$23,115.50, NT=$30,388.05, QLD=$20,650.50, SA=$27,930.00, TAS=$23,088.25, VIC=$31,904.00, WA=$23,175.25).


Utilities

In NSW, Vic, WA and QLD there is no requirement to have telephone, television or internet cabling installed (however if any of these services are already installed, it is the landlord’s responsibility to make sure they remain in working condition). In the ACT the landlord must provide a telephone line and in SA the landlord needs to provide the installation of all three services. In Tasmania and the Northern Territory there is no mention of any requirements.


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