Rental law reform

Working together for a better renting future

The Queensland Government is committed to a better renting future for Queenslanders. The priority is to provide a strong, balanced approach that protects renters and rental property owners while improving stability in the rental market.

  • Stage 1 reforms implemented

  • Options Paper

  • Develop proposed reforms

  • Legislation in Parliament

  • Legislation passed

  • Laws implemented to strengthen renters’ rights and stabilise rents

The Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2024 received Assent on 6 June 2024.

Changes to the law will come into effect in stages. We have prioritised reforms that respond to current housing market conditions, including applying the 12-month limit on rent increases to the rental property instead of the tenancy and banning all forms of rent bidding.

Other reforms will commence on a date to be set by Proclamation to give the sector time to prepare for implementation, including:

  • protecting renters’ privacy by requiring 48 hours’ notice for entries other than general inspections, safety checks and in emergencies
  • developing a prescribed form for rental applications and requiring that personal information be stored and destroyed securely
  • limiting re-letting costs based on the time remaining on a fixed-term lease
  • requiring property owners or their agents to pass on utility bills promptly and disclose financial benefits they receive from any rent payment methods they offer
  • giving renters a fee-free option to pay rent and choice about how to apply for a rental property
  • capping all rental bonds and requiring that claims against rental bonds be substantiated.

The Amendment Act also allows the department to start developing (in consultation with the rental sector):

  • a portable bond scheme
  • a Rental Sector Code of Conduct
  • a framework for parties to agree on installing modifications necessary for safety, security or accessibility in rental properties.

These reforms have been informed by:

Read more about the current rental law reforms.

How did we get here?

The Queensland Government has been working with the residential rental sector and the community to improve rental experiences in Queensland. Read about the activities we have undertaken to progress rental law reform.

Open Doors to Renting Reform

In September 2018, we launched the Open Doors to Renting Reform Consultation (PDF, 3670.53 KB). We received more than 137,000 responses from renters, property owners and property managers about their experiences of living in, owning or managing a rental property, and how it could be improved

Safety, security and certainty (Stage 1) reforms

We received more than 15,000 responses providing community feedback on detailed reform options  outlined in the Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement (C-RIS) (PDF, 2950.22 KB), across these 5 priority renting issues:

  • ending leases fairly
  • Minimum Housing Standards
  • domestic and family violence protections
  • renting with pets
  • minor modifications.

Consultation told us that:

  • all parties want greater fairness, and better balancing of renter and property owner rights
  • most renters, property owners and managers want greater transparency around ending a lease, and they support changes that assist renters experiencing domestic and family violence
  • renters and property owners want a better relationship and support to resolve tenancy issues that may arise, without needing to access dispute resolution or decision-making services.

In 2020, we prioritised responding to the health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. We implemented, adjusted and extended temporary regulatory measures to help the residential rental sector manage COVID-19 impacts on residential leases.

We comprehensively analysed the regulatory and economic impacts of proposed Stage 1 reforms. The Decision Regulatory Impact Statement (PDF, 4822.12 KB):

  • describes consultation feedback received on Stage 1 reform options tested through the C-RIS in 2019
  • provides a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis of the recommended reforms.

Deloitte Access Economics analysed the economic impacts of recommended Stage 1 reforms (PDF, 1701.35 KB) and found them negligible.

An updated analysis of economic impacts (PDF, 1421.54 KB) was prepared, with the costs related to minor modification reforms removed as they were no longer progressing as part of Stage 1 rental law reforms.

Removing these costs reduced the economic impact of Stage 1 rental law reforms. The analysis was also updated for current market conditions following COVID-19 impacts on the housing market.

In 2022, the Housing Legislation Amendment Act 2021 amended the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 to progress Stage 1 reforms.

Read more about Stage 1 reforms.

Strengthening renters’ rights and stabilising rents

From 1 July 2023, Queensland rental laws limited the frequency of rent increases to once a year for all tenancies to stabilise rents in the private rental market.

Queenslanders were asked to have their say on a proposed reform in a discussion paper (PDF, 379.85 KB)to apply the limit on rent increases to the rental property rather than individual tenancies.

We received submissions from rental property owners, managers, renters and the Queensland community providing feedback on this proposal.

The Stage 2 Rental Law Reform options paper (PDF, 843.23 KB) outlined detailed reform options across 5 key legislative reform priorities, including:

  • installing modifications
  • making personalisation changes
  • balancing privacy and access
  • improving the rental bond process
  • fairer fees and charges.

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