Essentials For Tenants

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Do not sign anything unless you understand what it means. Never sign a blank form, even if it looks official. All official notices you give your landlord or agent must include their name, your signature and other details in some circumstances.

At the beginning of a tenancy

  • read and sign your ‘Residential Tenancy Agreement’ form
  • keep a copy of anything you sign
  • seek advice if you have a tenancy issue or question
  • check that your new home is completely safe
  • complete a ‘Condition Report’ if you have paid a bond – you can add to or edit a ‘Condition Report’ completed by an agent (see page 12 for details)
  • consider taking photos of the property before you move in
  • complete and sign the ‘Bond Lodgement’ form and keep the receipt (see page 11 for details)
  • contact the utility companies of your choice to ensure these are connected by the time you move in. During a tenancy
  • communicate with your landlord or agent and keep them informed of any problems that may arise
  • make sure you pay your rent on time
  • keep all records such as rent receipts
  • keep your property reasonably clean; this will minimise any problems that may occur during a landlord or agent inspection
  • get written permission from your landlord if you wish to sub-let or assign the tenancy agreement to someone else
  • let your landlord or agent know of anrepairs that need to be done (see pages19-21 for details)
  • put all requests to your landlord or agent in writing. Forms are available from Consumer Affairs Victoria. At the end of a tenancy
  • give adequate notice when planning to leave; the notice period will depend on your reason for leaving (see page 29 for details)
  • pay any outstanding rent
  • check your responsibilities for separately metered utilities
  • clean the property
  • consider taking photos after you move your furniture out to show the condition of the property
  • take all your belongings with you (see page 36 for details)
  • keep the ‘Condition Report’ in case of a dispute
  • try to agree with your landlord on the return of the bond (see page 35 for details)
  • if you have paid a bond, complete the ‘Bond Claim’ form and return it to the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority. The form must be signed by your and your landlord or agent
  • leave a forwarding address with your landlord or agent or Australia Post.

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