Most states and territories have now wound up emergency support for residential tenants and many have moved into a transitional period for support measures.

Except for the Northern Territory, all Australian states and territories had a moratorium in place since 2020. The moratorium was designed to support renters who could not meet their rental commitments during the COVID-19 emergency period.

>> Read more: What tenancy protections are available for renters after the moratorium ends?

Each state and territory has dealt with the eviction moratorium differently.

Moratorium: A legally authorised period of delay in the performance of a legal authority, or payment of a debt

Eviction moratorium
Be prepared: Consider your next move once the emergency period ends in your state.

Your options once the emergency period ends

Keep in mind that options will vary depending on the state/territory you call home. There are a few scenarios you may encounter once the eviction moratorium comes to an end:

OptionThink about 
You renegotiate your current leaseRisksYou may not be able to meet expectations around the increased rent amount. You may agree to pay the increased rent, but be unable to meet this commitment long-term.
BenefitsYou secure a tenancy
Things to considerWhat can you afford, and how long would you like your lease to be? What are other properties in your area being leased for? Don't agree to pay more rent than you can afford. If your rent is increased, your landlord could also ask you to increase your rental bond.
You end your tenancy and don't take a new leaseRisksFinding other housing could be difficult, especially given the low vacancy rates in some states. Homelessness.
BenefitsPossibly no, or lower rent.
Things to considerWhat housing options are available to you? You may have limited options. Consider the costs associated with ending a tenancy and moving into a new one, as well as time you'll need to spend applying for rentals, waiting to move and the costs of removalists and relocation.
You start a new leaseRisksYou may not be able to find a new rental if your state has a low vacancy rate. You may not be able to afford rent. You may not be able to meet your landlord's expectations long-term
BenefitsYour conditions might be better and the rent might be cheaper
Things to considerThe cost of ending your lease. Consider things like money and inconvenience, and starting a new tenancy (bond, utility connections, moving expenses).
Your agreement is terminatedRisksThere could be a lack of other rental options, which could leave you homeless. Depending on why your lease is terminated, you risk ending up on a database like TICA or NTD, which could jeopardise future applications.
BenefitsYou could find a better/cheaper property to rent some time in future. You could also live with friends/family rent-free.
Things to considerIn some states/territories, the rental market conditions are very tight with a very low vacancy rate.

How to manage your unexpected costs

Ending your tenancy and need to start a new lease? RentBond is a great way to manage your costs.

You can use RentBond to pay your rental bond, two weeks rent-in-advance and other moving costs. Once approved, you repay the loan over time.

Moving from one rental to another? Or do you only need short-term bond assistance to cover your moving period while you wait on your bond return? RentBond’s 21-day interest-free period can fund your bond at no cost.

All you need to do is repay it within the first 21 days. The RentBond application is 100% online, making it easy to apply, no matter where you live in Australia.

Need help paying your bond? RentBond is here to help.

If in doubt, ask for help

When eviction moratoriums end, ordinary tenancy laws will apply again, ending the existing COVID-19 response laws.

Have questions about what happens once the COVID-19 emergency period comes to an end in your state/territory? Get in contact with your local tenancy support organisations. Check out this article to find your go-to contacts for tenancy support.

Rent.com.au’s Facebook Community is a great place to ask questions about your tenancy. The group is a great place to get advice from other renters, agents and landlords. Join the Rent.com.au Community today!

What happens from here?

As the COVID-19 situation continues to unfold Australia-wide, we will likely see continued government rules and regulations impacting residential tenancy agreements nationwide.

For information on new rental laws and transitional periods after the moratorium ends in your state and territory, check out our wrap of all available support measures.

You must review your lease and Residential Tenancy Agreement to understand your specific rights and obligations better. Be proactive and engage with your landlord/agent sooner than later, instead of waiting until you can’t pay the rent.

Rent.com.au
Rent.com.au

Rent.com.au is Australia's largest company dedicated to renters and is owned and operated by ASX-listed Rent.com.au Limited (RNT:ASX). For over 14 years, Rent.com.au has exclusively focused on making renters' lives easier by making it easier to find a property, secure it, move in and pay rent. More than 83,000 properties are available to rent from 5,000 agents and private landlords. Renters have created 1.12 million Renter Resumes on the website to date.

19 COMMENTS

  1. I thought I’d comment from a mortgage holder/landlord’s perspective.

    Upon contacting my bank, I’ve been told the interest portion of my loan can be suspended for 6 months. However that amount in total becomes due at the end of 6 months as a lump sum. If you cannot come up with that amount, you could be facing selling your property at a very bad time. Certainly you’d be looking for tenants who can afford to pay, so you aren’t faced with ongoing financial difficulty. It would be really helpful if the media did not portray landlords as greedy mean people. Many are very good to their tenants and themselves face job uncertainty. Many landlords have effectively replaced the hugely scaled down housing commission…and are providing a much needed source of affordable housing to lower income earners..at least, that is my experience.

  2. After the 6 months moratorium, does this mean the landlord can ask for the 6 months’ worth of rent to be paid? Or will they have the right to increase your rent in 6months to include the loss? eg. I pay $700.00 per week now, will they later expect me to pay $780 per week to make up what I didn’t pay in the last 6 months?

  3. It would s great that the Government has considered renters and placed a moratorium on evictions, however, those who have lost income will still have no means to pay back rent once this crisis is over. It also has to be considered that for some landlords the rent they receive is their source of income. This is a difficult and complex matter to deal with. I don’t think the moratorium has done anything to ease renter’s minds at this point in time as there are no hard and fast rules, and individual circumstances are so varied.

  4. We have e contacted our agent a few times, letting him know firstly, that both our industries were to be affected, and we would be out of work , and are going to try and seek alternate employment if possible, but fir now join jobseekers at Centrelink,they advised us to just let them know if we get it or if we struggle , just keep paying . So after applying , we informed them and again letting them know we believe we’ll only get $127 a fortnight, not knowing if that’s each or separately ( me and my husband)), just advised to keep paying .as we’re not at a critical stage yet! So after next week we won’t have any income at all left and still not receiving a payment from Centrelink- so what are we supposed to do for the best? Our agents don’t know, they haven’t even let us know if they have spoken to the house owners or not .

  5. I am a renter in a share accommodation with one other. It is a 12 month fixed term lease. The other lease holder bailed on Dec 27th so I have borrowed money to keep a safe roof over my head. I can not continue to pay the $530pw, so have proposed to the owner he lets me stay and I pay my half.
    The lease runs out on the 30th of this month April.
    Am I ok to stay here and still pay my share?

  6. I understand this and it’s welcome news but what if you can’t afford the rent or can afford a reduced rent then you still may get a negative response from the owner via the agent.
    Plus you are still getting in to more debt as you will have to pay later

  7. Does this include if your lease is up in less than 30days & you havnt been able to find another place due to the covid19 virus? Can the landlord evict you?

  8. Many landlords are not making profit and cannot afford to have unpaid rent. Who/what covers us? Is the government going to pick up this bill as well?

  9. Real estate agents are sending termination notices breaches etc even after being told rent late due to covid. What information is the tenant obliged to give them they are asking for bank statements separation forms etc and not contacting owners

  10. Want to know if I can get out of my 3 months lease early as I can’t afford to rent my place after losing my job due to Corona virus out break. Can anyone help me by telling me if I can get outta of it without losing my bond plz

  11. Who is going to assist the landlords? And before you say the banks will put payments on hold, they don’t put the interest on hold, so you are paying interest on interest and you have 6 months to get back on top of it-seriously-good luck with that-may as well give house to bank now!!!! Meanwhile tenants get all the help and told they don’t have to pay. Basically, there will be a lot of landlords going bankrupt & I really can’t see the banks not evicting tenants when this happens. Why do the landlords have to lose their home and everything before they can get assistance.
    As for the freeze on evictions – we’ve just had a tenant destroy a beautiful home. Brand new bathroom, carpets, fittings, freshly painted, easy care gardens destroyed, classy place. Going along fine then on one of the 3 month inspections – didn’t recognise the place. Imagine if we had to put up with this for another 6 months. Why doesn’t the tenant have to get a low interest loan to pay their bills? It has swung too far the other way for tenants. Food for thought for all of you renters. If it keeps going this way you will see a mass exit of properties to rent with either people going bankrupt or bank repossessing. This will reduce the rental market, hence pushing the prices up. Where will you live then – government housing – probably earn too much. How about devising a fair system. When a landlord can’t pay the mortgage, they are penalised with interest & late payment fees, when a tenant can’t pay rent, the landlord is expected to be the bank………We’ve been told by agencies the tenant can’t afford to pay, because they went on a holiday which they’re entitled to, meanwhile we have to pay for the repairs, and sacrifice any holiday due to lack of funds providing a beautiful place for someone else to live……hmmm. I think people are using COVID19 to dump their debts – are we all going to go the shops & not pay or expect the shop assistants to pay for us. Think about it.

  12. What about break lease. We cant afford to keep paying 2 rental properties. Our landlord wont consider an agreement to end our tenancy. We are financially broke.the government needs to enforce this legally

  13. It would really help if mortgages were frozen for 6 months so that landlords would find it easier to be very flexible with rents. The same thing happened in France where I am from and I in return pass that on to the tenants as the obligations to pay my mortgage no longer exist for the next 6 months. Seems like an easy way to solve the issue on hand both for landlords and tenants.

  14. What about the landlords who have tenants from overseas, ie. they cannot get any rent relief from Centrelink.
    Our tenants (from South America) are claiming they cannot pay their rent and have quoted the moratorium at us saying they don’t have to pay and we can’t evict them. Due to our financial setup, we cannot get any mortgage relief or sign up for any benefits from Centrelink. My husband has just lost his job, we are a family of 5 who have no income other than our rent and our tenants are refusing to pay because they say they don’t have to … they are not Australians so have no relief from any government initiatives.

    We have re-advertised the property and there are plenty of people out there desperate for housing who say they can pay the rent.

    Where does that leave us?

  15. Well this has not helped me n my family. My partner myself and 2 children are finding very hard to survive. Almost 3yr In our rental and had a financial set back and reached out for help and support didn’t happen we looked after inside and out maintained it and our children very much loved home 13yr girl high school 7 housed down and 5yr boy block down other end we had no help to find house they just remove us on street partner has full time employed 3yrs very good at his job hard working welder and the impact has put stress and pressure on out life in 3weejs I’ve spent 3800 on accomadation and that’s not with other expenses my question is how could they do that when we had the full amount of rent to cover bit still said no not even giving a cear about what these kid will go throu never have they been unstabeal environment or not ever been homeless and we got put on street I start of carona virous situation we live in a motell room day in n out 700 a week and 2 children are finding hard not being aloud out how dose it seam fare this aloud to h happen 🤨😥 put in for so many houses but still housing wont even find a place it’s so wrong we are quite happy respectful ppl have never disrespected our rental we where treated like ppl with young and co but got sold and next realestate treated us like a number not a tenant how can I find help provided because my children don’t desurve this unfairness

  16. Why punish landlords who tend to be mums and dads, of which many have lost their jobs but can’t get assistance. Banks will give hardship relief but will still issue a black mark against your name so the do-gooders who think this is the answer need to have their head checked. Landlords will lose everything and, really, how many tenants are going to do the right thing? The government’s decision has just given passage for tenants to live rent free for five months because they’ll only lose a bond at the end. I want to know how many landlords really can carry their loan during Covid? I know many and haven’t heard of one who will be in a situation where they will have a home at the end of six months. The government should have avoided double dole payments and directed the cash to direct rent payments for those people to their landlords. I never thought I’d see the day that the Australian Government (whose ignorance enabled Covid to penetrate our nation) support a Dictatorship. Let’s hope the masses see the long-term implications of thus government;s mismanagement of the rental issue next election. I am astounded at the lack of thought behind this decision. I will lose the roof over my head due to this, yet my tenant will be sleeping soundly in free home where she can change the locks so her landlord has to stay on the street. Madness. Landlords are generally people having a go, not affluent business people with disposable income.

  17. My realestate this morning has put in a eviction order for the 21st in 7 days because my partner lost his job, our rent is $440 a week and I get paid $430 a fortnight from the government. He can’t get paid because he’s been in his job for less than 12 months and a NZ citizen.
    So right now I believe rent needs to be freezed.
    I have a 1yr old and am facing homelessness because of this.

  18. Hi I was just wondering whether the new moratorium goes for people that have already received a eviction notice or new notice’s of eviction any info would be great so I can let my sister know thank you

LEAVE A REPLY