Melbourne businesses remain empty as lockdown persists. Image – Canva
  • Landlords who waiver rents in Victoria could be eligible for grants
  • $20M has been dedicated in the Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund
  • Almost six weeks has passed since Victoria entered it's sixth lockdown

Victorian landlords who waiver at least 50% of the rent for their commercial tenants can now apply for grant compensation.

Minister for Small Business Jaala Pulford announced the $20 million Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund today. It is designed to support small landlords who are reducing and waiving rent.

“We’re supporting landlords who are doing the right thing by their tenants – it’s about everyone playing their part in unprecedented times.”

Jaala Pulford, Minister for Small Business

The announcement comes as almost six weeks have passed since Victoria entered into the current lockdown. The grants are hoped to provide relief for small landlords and small businesses.

Grants of up to $6,000 per tenancy are available to eligible commercial landlords that waive rents. In some cases of acute hardship, small landlords could receive up to $10,000 per tenancy.

Landlords must waive rents between 28 July 2021 and 15 January 2022.

To be eligible the applicant landlord must have total taxable landholdings of less than $3 million, provide a rent waiver of at least 50% to their tenants through the state government’s Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme and use the grant to offset the waiver.

The applicant landlord cannot have simply deferred all of the rent.

“These are important initiatives which offer security to businesses and landlords, to help them get through the pandemic and back on their feet.”

Jaala Pulford, Minister for Small Business

The Victorian government is encouraging tenants and landlords to go into negotiations with the help of the Victorian Small Business Commission which provides free mediation to help negotiate fair agreements.

Tax Relief

Land tax cuts of up to 25% are available to landlords waiving rents and some eligible owner-occupier businesses.

This is in addition to any previous land tax cuts.

Any remaining 2020 and 2021 land taxes can be deferred until 31 May 2022, for all eligible landlords.

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