Renting privately

Starting a tenancy

Responsibilities for landlords and tenants are explained in the:

Tenant responsibilities

The tenant has a responsibility to meet all conditions included in the lease agreement as well as:

  • pay rent in full when it is due
  • keep the property in a reasonable state of cleanliness and free from health and fire hazards
  • not cause or allow damage to occur, either intentionally or through negligence, to the property
  • not allow the property to be used for illegal purposes
  • allow other neighbours and residents to live in comfort, peace and privacy
  • notify the landlord of any repairs or maintenance needed as soon as possible

Landlord responsibilities

The landlord has a responsibility to comply with all conditions included in the lease agreement as well as:

  • providing the property in a clean and reasonable state at the start of the tenancy
  • providing written or verbal instructions for any domestic appliances in the property that require instruction - eg air conditioner
  • maintaining the property to a reasonable standard and organising repairs
  • giving proper receipts and maintaining records of any money paid
  • allowing tenants to live in reasonable peace, comfort and privacy in the property for the duration of the tenancy
  • paying council rates and taxes
  • providing and maintaining locks to ensure the property is reasonably secure
  • providing a copy of the signed lease agreement, the information brochure, and completed inspection sheets at the beginning and end of the tenancy
  • lodging bond money with Consumer and Business Services (CBS).

If a landlord doesn't meet their responsibilities, a tenant can end the lease by giving them written notice to remedy the breach (312.2 KB PDF). If the breach isn't remedied by the specified time, usually at least seven days, the tenancy will end. If this occurs the tenant must move out by the specified date.

Forms and fact sheets for starting a tenancy

If the lease agreement, information brochure and inspection sheets are not given to the tenant at the start of a lease agreement the landlord may be fined.

Related information

On this site

Rental listing scams


Lease agreement terms inconsistent with the Residential Tenancies Act (166.7 KB PDF)

For an alternative version of a document on this page contact CBS.

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Page last updated 28 June 2017

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Attorney-General's Department
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