Why do properties fail to meet housing standards and who’s responsible?

With a greater proportion of the population renting than ever before, Australia’s attention is on the rental sector. Multiple states have introduced minimum housing standards in order to protect tenants from living in unsafe or unfit conditions – a worthy initiative, but one which has led to confusion within the industry. Landlords have been left wondering where the responsibility for assessing housing standards lies, with property managers scrambling to ensure properties in their portfolios meet the requirements.

The risk of non-compliance from a legal standpoint varies. However, depending on the issue, there is a more pressing risk to the safety of the tenant. With such critical consequences involved, professional advice is essential. PropertySafe’s fit-for-purpose reports are a simple, straightforward solution to a complex, time-consuming problem.

But what are the most common problems with properties for rent?

Since the introduction of reforms in NSW and VIC, PropertySafe has offered custom reports that can be used to check properties are meeting minimum standards, providing confidence to property managers as they navigate the regulations and advise landlords. Over the last 12 months, the team at PropertySafe have used these reports to track the difference between a safe, compliant home and one that doesn’t meet the relevant requirements as well as the specific types of issues found.

It’s clear from the reports that many properties are failing to meet the standard of structural soundness. Homes that fail to meet this standard are not safe to be tenanted and will not comply with state regulations. This issue in particular is one where specific, professional skills are required to make a determination. An unsound property is dangerous to its inhabitants. A mistaken assessment by a property manager will lead to penalties to agencies and owners.

With such high stakes for all involved in a tenancy, property managers must take these standards seriously. But unless a property manager is also a licensed builder or has building experience, how can they possibly be expected to determine a building’s structural soundness?

PropertySafe’s custom reports are specifically designed for each state’s particular requirements, with an assessment conducted by a professional, experienced safety inspectors. The reports check each standard against the property and provides information on the requirements to rectify any issues uncovered. They also offer the bi-annual gas and electrical safety checks required specifically for VIC. A professional assessment ensures that issues are discovered and resolved without the anxiety of potentially missing something that could lead to penalties or even injury.

In an increasingly complex regulatory environment, give yourself peace of mind by having a professional PropertySafe inspection completed. The report offers the most comprehensive way to keep tenants safe from harm, and agencies and landlords safe from non-compliance and associated penalties.

To learn more, call PropertySafe on 1300 350 000.