What happens if a tenancy is due to end but the tenant is or becomes subject to a public health order or requirement to self-isolate due to COVID-19?
All parties to lease agreements are required to comply with public health orders relating to COVID-19. This may result in a tenant being unable to vacate at the end of their tenancy or in accordance with a Notice to Terminate/Vacate due to isolation requirements. Tenants and owners should discuss potential solutions to manage these challenges.
What happens if an owner and tenant cannot resolve matters relating to the ending of the lease while a tenant is subject to a COVID-19 public health order?
An owner may still apply to the court for an order for vacant possession. The court will determine when it is appropriate for the tenancy to end.
What happens if repairs are needed but a tenant or owner is required to self-isolate due to COVID-19?
Everyone is required to comply with public health orders relating to COVID-19. This might mean an owner is temporarily unable to comply with a condition of the lease agreement or tradespeople might be prevented from attending a rental property for a short time while the tenant is required to be in isolation. Tenants and owners should discuss potential solutions to manage these challenges.
What happens if a routine inspection is due to occur but a tenant is required to isolate?
All parties to lease agreements are required to comply with public health orders relating to COVID-19. An owner and tenant should discuss an alternative timeframe for the inspection or arrange a virtual video inspection if agreed by the tenant.
What happens if I am due to move into a rental property but the current tenants are required to isolate?
As the existing tenants are required to comply with isolation orders, you should consider alternative arrangements in the short term and discuss options with the property owner or real estate agency. You are not required to pay rent until you have possession of the property.
What are the cleaning obligations placed on tenants and owners in response to COVID-19?
The normal cleaning obligations placed on parties to a residential lease agreement still apply.
In the event a member of a household is confirmed to have COVID-19, a tenant is required to undertake reasonable cleaning efforts to minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission. After the tenancy has ended an owner is to ensure the property is reasonably clean for the next occupants. Reasonable cleaning includes the use of disinfectants on surfaces in the property. If either party is concerned about the risk of COVID-19 transmission, they may engage cleaners to undertake additional cleaning specific to COVID-19 at their own cost.
More information is available at the coronavirus website: https://www.coronavirus.tas.gov.au/ (external link).
You can also contact us with further questions you may have.
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