In this bulletin, we share an overview of recent changes to residential tenancy laws and how they affect you.
Whilst Consumer Protection has actively encouraged lessors and agents to permit tenants to affix furniture to prevent it from toppling onto children, it was not a legal requirement until now.
From 2 December 2019 changes to tenancy laws allow tenants to apply to a lessor/agent for permission to affix furniture in order to ensure the safety of a child or person with a disability. That person is not required to reside with you. You may be a grandparent seeking to secure the furniture on your rented premises to keep visiting grandchildren safe. A flat-screen television is considered to be an item of furniture.
To make your application to the lessor/agent you must use the approved form and if the lessor/agent has not responded within 14 days they are taken to have consented.
A lessor/agent can only refuse your request if:
- affixing the item to the wall would disturb material containing asbestos; or
- the tenanted premises are entered in the Register of Heritage Places; or
- the tenanted premises are situated in a strata scheme with by-laws prohibiting the affixing of the item to the wall of the premises.
You must notify the lessor/agent in writing of any damage caused by affixing and removing furniture and are responsible to repair it. You must remove the items from the wall at the end of the tenancy and restore the wall to its original condition or pay the agent/lessor reasonable costs for the repair unless you have an agreement in writing that this is not required.