Bond, rent and service charges in residential parks
Residential park fees like bond, rent and utility charges, how those fees are calculated and receipted.
Bond and bond claims
Bond in a residential park is up to four weeks' rent, and a receipt must be issued within 48 hours of the park operator receiving the bond.
The park operator must lodge the bond with Consumer and Business Services (CBS) within seven days of receiving it. CBS will hold the bond until the end of the tenancy.
All or part of the bond can be claimed at the end of the tenancy. A park operator can claim a bond for things like:
- unpaid rent
- repair costs for damage caused by the resident
- cleaning costs.
A resident can dispute a bond claim if they believe it is unfair or incorrect. Visit bond refunds for information about how to claim a bond.
A park operator cannot ask for money to:
- extend or renew an agreement
- provide 24 hour access to the park to a resident - eg an access card
- consider a request to sublet or assign.
Rent in advance
The park operator can ask for up to two weeks' rent in advance at the start of the tenancy. A resident does not have to pay any more rent until that two weeks has expired.
Residents can check with Housing SA if they are eligible for help to pay rent and bond.
A park operator must give the resident a receipt for any rent money within 48 hours, unless the rent is paid directly into a bank account. Park operators must keep detailed rent records for all rent paid.
The rent receipts and records information sheet (629.2KB PDF) provides examples of proper rent records.
Rent can only be increased once every 12 months and after giving at least 60 days written notice of rent increase.
If the agreement is for a fixed term the park operator must include a condition in the agreement specifically allowing for a rent increase, usually by writing that the rent may be increased during the agreement and how it will be worked out - eg according to the consumer price index.
If the agreement shows the new rent amount and the date it applies from, the park operator doesn't need to give written notice of a rent increase.
Rent can be reduced by agreement and this can occur on a temporary basis.
If a resident believes that a rent increase is excessive they can apply to the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal to have the rent reduced. The application must be lodged within 30 days of receiving the written notice of rent increase.
Charges for utilities and services
A park operator can charge for utilities and services - eg water, electricity, gas - if the site is individually metered and this is detailed in the lease agreement. The resident does not have to pay the charges unless the park operator provides details of the charges on the resident's request.
The information provided should include:
- the period of time the charges relate to
- the amount used
- the amount being charged.
If the site isn't individually metered, the park operator can include charges for utilities when setting the rent, but cannot charge the resident separately for them.
A resident can be charged separately for bottled gas if this is supplied by the park operator. A charge can only be made for gas used.
Concessions for residents
A resident may be eligible for concessions for water, energy bills, dog registration, telephone and other household bills. There is also a concession specifically for residential park residents.
Check the state government concessions finder for eligibility.
Fees for overnight visitors
A fee may apply for overnight visitors. This should be detailed in the lease agreement or in the park rules and should show the dollar amount charged.