How long can a guest stay with me

“How long can a guest stay in my rental property with me before it becomes a problem?”

Feature agent: Emma Bettencourt, Senior Property Manager at Bradfield Cleary.

“Everyone is a little different with this, as it can come down to the owner’s personal preference, but the timeframe I usually give tenants is one month,” Emma said.

“Any longer than that, and it will appear as though you are subletting the property without the owner’s prior consent, which is a breach of the Residential Tenancy Agreement and most likely, your Strata by-laws.”

Emma said it’s always best to be upfront and honest with your real estate agent from the get-go.

“When in doubt, just ask, and we’ll be able to let you know how best to proceed,” she said.

A good rule to remember: The leaseholder is always responsible for their guests. If complaints are received, they will ultimately fall on the person who is on the lease agreement.

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Your right to quiet enjoyment at the property

Having guests at your property for a period of time is part of your right to quiet enjoyment and exclusive possession of the property.

This right to quiet enjoyment should also include a right to live with your spouse, de facto or close family member.

Your right to privacy means that you shouldn’t have to tell your property manager every time you start a new relationship or have someone stay over.

If you have a guest stay at your house temporarily, there’s no requirement to tell your landlord or agent or ask for permission.

What is the difference between a guest and a sub-tenant? 

A guest becomes a sub-tenant (or occupant) when they pay or contribute money, particularly if they start to pay a set amount regularly.

Your guest is also more likely to become a sub-tenant:

  • If the property is their only residence;
  • If they have a key;
  • If they direct their mail to your address;
  • If they help to care for the property; or
  • Arrange to stay for a long time.

You will need written permission from your landlord/agent if you want to have a sub-tenant live with you.

If you don’t have written permission for a sub-tenant to be there, you are in breach of your lease. Your landlord could serve you with a Notice to Remedy, and then apply to the Tribunal for an order that the person moves out.

Alternatively, they could serve you with a notice to vacate.

For information specific to your state or territory, check out our Tenancy Support In Your State page.

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Emma Bettencourt
Senior Property Manager at
Emma's passion for people and property and her skills as a listener and communicator make her a vital member of the Mint360property management team. Now a Senior Property Manager Emma plays a key administrative and organisational role within the business.