Great researching web site/www.austlii.edu.au

From: Adam Randall


Hello again
http://www.austlii.edu.au
I have spent many hours on this web site I found, which lists all of the residential tenancy tribunal hearings in the recent past for each state, it lists the full case history, and the rulings and reasons for the rulings. Its a great resource for learning little things that usually you would not otherwise know.
Something new I learned.
A pet bond of any amount for damage done by pets taken at the beginning of a lease is a waste of time because the act does not allow for it, the tenant would be refunded that amount even if their pet ate the lounge room, and half the garage.
Regards Adam
 
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Reply: 1
From: Duncan M


Hi Adam,

I agree its invaluable.. I've not seen the other states tenancy tribunals on there, but have read all of the available SA decisions.

The particular case you refer to arises from the fact that in SA you cannot request additional monies from a tenant over and above a standard 4 week bond. Other examples that have occured are Key Deposits, Roller Door Remote Control Deposits they have also been disallowed and the landlords chastised by the tribunal.

If you're going to allow pets, you need to give detailed instructions to the tenant (on the lease) about what is and what isnt acceptable, detail the breed of dog that you are prepared to allow and what access the dog should have to the house. There was a case in SA where permission was given for the tenant to have a dog, at the time the tenancy was taken out they had a very small dog that subsequently died and was replaced with a very large dog the landlord sought to have the tenancy terminated but the tribunal allowed the tenancy to continue with the large dog because generic permission for a dog was given. If it had been detailed on the lease a breach would have occurred and the tenancy could have been terminated if it had continued.



Whats nice to see is that the Tribunal in this state appears to act very fairly, the one "take home" thing I learnt out of reading the decision is to follow the act to the letter when dealing with tenants, do not deviate from what it provides at all.

The other key point I took out of the reading was that often Real Estate agents DONT apply the act to the letter, dont for one moment presume that because you're having your property professionally managed that it is in fact being properly managed. You need to question your manager about their knowledge of the act and often double check their activity when you have problems with tenants.


Regards,

Duncan
 
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