RENTERS: Government announce a six-month moratorium on evictions

A six-month moratorium on evictions for both residential and commercial tenants during the COVID-19 pandemic, has been announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison last night (29/03/2020). 

The Prime Minister stresses the need for landlords and tenants cooperation at this time.

A six-month moratorium on evictions have been put in place by the government, relieving the majority of both residential and commercial tenants in financial distress due to job and business loss.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said a series of principles had been agreed upon at Sunday night’s national cabinet.

“The most significant of those is that states and territories will be moving to put a moratorium on evictions of persons as a result of financial distress … for the next six months,” he said.

This will come as relief for tenants in financial distress across the country as they are guaranteed a roof over their heads – however it does not mean they will see any reduction in their rental payments.

Landlords need to work with their tenants and banks on solutions, which should start immediately.

“Now there is a lot more work to be done here and my message to tenants, particularly commercial tenants and commercial landlords is a very straight forward one: we need you to sit down, talk to each other and work this out,” he said. 

He stresses the importance of landlord and tenant cooperation by highlighting the perspective that “[we need you to sit down] so on the other side the landlord has a tenant, which is a business that can pay rent, and the business is a business that can re-emerge on the other side of this and be able to go on and employ people on the other side of these arrangements.”

Measures will also be put in place to encourage and support agreements, as part of the idea of “hibernating” businesses until the COVID-19 crisis passes.

“We are in unchartered territory, but the goal should be shared and that is a business can reopen on the other side, not weighed down by excessive debts because of rental arrears, a landlord has a tenant so that they can continue into the future to be able to support the investments that they have made and banks have clients.”

Should you have any questions or concerns as an Asset Realty tenant, our Property Management and Customer Service Team is always available to be contacted directly. Contact us today!