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  • ACT offers rent relief fund for residents in financial hardship
  • Grants up to $2,500 available for up to four weeks
  • QLD opens public consultation on rental law reforms

Canberrans experiencing financial stress or hardship paying their rent can apply for financial assistance from the ACT Government, and Queensland will move ahead with rental reform.

ACT rent relief

Austrailan Capital Territory residents can apply for a $2500 grant from 17 April 2023 when applications open for the Rent Relief Fund.

Attorney-General Shane Rattenbury said that Care, a community organisation that assists people on low to moderate incomes or who are experiencing financial difficulty, will administer the Rent Relief Fund.

“The Fund will provide targeted, short-term support for people experiencing financial stress or hardship in the ACT’s private rental sector,” Attorney-General Rattenbury said.

“The Fund is one way we are supporting vulnerable Canberrans and easing the stress for households worrying where next week’s rent will come from.”

If a grant is approved by Care, the applicant can receive a one-off grant for up to four weeks rent, capped at $2,500.

The grant is paid directly to the landlord or to the grantor in the case of occupants and will be open to 30 June 2024.

The ACT Government announced in February that the new Co-ordinator General for Housing will oversee the delivery of the Rent Relief Fund.

Minister for Housing and Suburban Development Yvette Berry said, “The re-establishment of the rent relief fund is an important part of the government’s plan to support Canberrans with the rising cost of living.”

“A secure home is a foundation for people’s wellbeing. We know that the cost of housing can be a significant pressure for some households, and this additional support will go to those who need it most.

“Alongside the rent relief fund, the ACT Government is releasing more land, growing and renewing public housing, and reforming the Territory Plan to ensure more housing options for future Canberrans.”

For full details, please see the ACT Government website.

QLD rental reform

Queenslanders are being urged to have their say on Stage 2 rental law reforms, with public consultation now open.

The reforms aim to provide a strong, balanced approach that protects the rights of renters and lessors, while improving stability in the rental market.

The Stage 2 reforms look to make it easier for renters to make changes to rental properties for safety reasons and personalisation.

Among the other key priority areas: balancing of renters’ rights to privacy and quiet enjoyment with property owners’ entry rights; ensuring rental bond settings provide appropriate security and parties are transparent and accountable about any claims against the bond when the tenancy ends, and ensuring rent payment, utility and reletting fees and charges are fair and reasonable.

Minister for Communities and Housing Leeanne Enoch said, “Many people in Queensland right now are facing housing pressures, none more so than the over a third of Queensland households who rent.”

“To tackle these pressures, we’re pursuing Stage 2 rental law reforms which build on the rental reforms we successfully delivered in 2021. Our reforms aim to strike the right balance between the needs of the community, while also supporting continued investment in the housing market.

“We welcome input from the public and stakeholders on our Stage 2 rental law reforms and encourage them to have their say over the next six weeks.”

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