Applications are open under the Residential Rent Relief Grant Scheme to help tenants who are struggling financially meet rent payments.
Renters who are facing a significant rent increase they are unable to afford can apply. However, their landlord must agree to a fixed-term lease of at least six months beyond 28 March 2021. This grant is capped at $2,000 per tenancy.
Tenants will be able to apply for the grants if they satisfy the following criteria:
- Receive a Centrelink payment as their primary income (excluding JobKeeper);
- Have less than $10,000 in savings;
- Pay more than 25 per cent of their income in rent per week;
- Are tenants or sub-tenants in a private residential property, rooming house or residential park (includes community housing);
- Have a tenancy agreement in place as at December 1, 2020 (includes boarders and lodgers with an agreement);
- Have a bond lodged with the Bond Administrator (if required under the Residential Tenancies Act 1987).
Rent arrears assistance is also available to help tenants pay their outstanding rent debt that arose before 1 December 2020. Grants for 75 per cent of rent arrears, up to a maximum of $4,000, will be paid directly to eligible landlords. This includes any rent that was waived or reduced during the moratorium emergency period.