The New South Wales Government has announced a 60-day moratorium on evictions to support the state as it battles through extended COVID-19 lockdowns.
The government announcement comes in the form of a ban on evictions during the lockdown period.
Residential tenants will have greater protection with a targeted eviction moratorium, which the government will implement through legislative changes.
A 60-day freeze on evictions
Tenants who can’t pay their rent fully because of the recent COVID-19 outbreak impacts can’t be evicted between now and 11 September 2021.
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the moratorium would support “those doing it tough, for workers who had a reduction in income by 25 per cent.”
The announcement has just been made and the legislation to underpin the moratorium and application processes are currently under development. More details will be made available soon.
Financial support for landlords
The Treasurer said landlords would not be left with the bill, saying he’d offer support for landlords who offer rent reductions.
For any rent reductions the landlords offer their tenants, they will receive a “rebate or discount in relation to land tax payable from that landlord to the state”.
“For those landlords that don’t qualify for land tax, we will provide a $1,500 payment as well.”
Assistance during the COVID-19 lockdown
Minister for Better Regulation Kevin Anderson said the short-term tenancy and landlords support package will provide renters and landlords with immediate assistance during the COVID-19 lockdown.
“We know a lot of people are currently experiencing hardship and the NSW Government is here to stand with renters and landlords while we work together to get through the latest COVID-19 outbreak,” Mr Anderson said.
“Our number one priority is the health and safety of our communities, and this package will provide support for both tenants and landlords, ensuring renters continue to have a roof over their heads while maintaining rental incomes for landlords.
“We are putting in place measures to prevent tenants financially impacted by COVID-19 restrictions from being evicted, creating stability while the State and Federal support measures roll out.”
Mr Anderson said the new package would, for the first time, provide a rental subsidy grant of up to $1,500 for landlords who offer rent reductions to COVID-19 impacted tenants.
In conjunction with support for renters, the federal government has announced it will up disaster relief payments by between $50 and $100, meaning eligible individuals will now be offered $375 or $600 per week for lost work as a direct result of the lockdown.
Although the increase comes in response to the situation in NSW, the Prime Minister confirmed that like all pandemic support, this new sum will be available to all jurisdictions that find themselves in the same predicament – extended lockdown.
These payments will be available across NSW for the duration of the lockdown.