As your lease is approaching its renewal date, it’s important to consider your options for continuing your rental agreement. If you plan on switching to a periodic lease, keep a few things in mind.

When you sign a lease, knowing whether it’s fixed-term or periodic is important.

A fixed-term lease lasts for a specific amount of time, usually 6 or 12 months, and is stated in your lease agreement.

After this time, you and your landlord can choose to extend the lease for another fixed term. If no new term is agreed upon, your lease automatically becomes a periodic agreement that renews every month until either you or your landlord gives notice.

Unlike a fixed-term lease, a periodic agreement has no set end date and continues on a rolling basis.

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What benefits come with being on a periodic tenancy agreement?

The primary advantage is flexibility.

You can choose when you wish to exit the agreement with a shorter notice period. Neither you nor your landlord are bound to a fixed term, so you can provide notice if the property no longer suits you or your living circumstances change.

Additionally, there is less paperwork involved. Once the periodic tenancy agreement is in place, there is no need to complete additional paperwork or renew your lease each year.

If your landlord is satisfied with your tenancy, you can switch to a fixed-term lease later.

Is there any disadvantage to having a periodic lease?

One of the main advantages of having a fixed-term lease is the ability to secure the rent amount, making it simpler to manage your finances.

However, your landlord can increase the rent if you have a periodic agreement. Nonetheless, they are required to provide a 60-day notice before doing so. Moreover, you may have limited choices when it comes to properties on a periodic agreement.

Many landlords prefer their tenants to have a fixed-term agreement to avoid having an empty property and no rent income.

How long can a periodic agreement last?

Periodic agreements have no fixed end date and can continue indefinitely. Typically, these agreements are renewed every month.

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What is the notice period required to terminate a periodic agreement?

The notice period varies based on your reasons for ending the agreement and varies by location. The notice periods are intended to provide sufficient time for your landlord to locate a tenant.

NSW

If you are in New South Wales and wish to terminate your periodic agreement with your landlord without providing a reason, you must give a minimum of 21 days’ notice.

You can visit the NSW Fair Trading website for further details regarding the minimum notice periods.

VIC

If you currently have a periodic agreement in Victoria and wish to move out, it is necessary to provide written notice of your intention to vacate.

Typically, the minimum required notice period is 28 days.

For additional details regarding minimum notice periods, please refer to Consumer Affairs Victoria.

QLD

In order to terminate your tenancy in Queensland, it is necessary to provide your lessor or agent with a Notice of Intention to leave, which is done through Form 13.

If you want to terminate your tenancy without providing a reason, you must give two weeks’ notice. It is important to ensure that you provide enough notice by counting from the expected day of receipt by the lessor or agent, including the day of handover.

If you choose to send the notice by mail, allow extra time for delivery. For more information on minimum notice periods, please visit the Queensland RTA website.

WA

In Western Australia, it is possible to terminate a periodic tenancy agreement without providing a reason.

However, you must give your lessor at least 21 days’ written notice. For more information about minimum notice periods, you can visit Consumer Protection WA.

SA

If you are a renter in South Australia, you must provide written notice of at least 21 days if your rent is paid weekly or fortnightly or one month if it is paid monthly.

However, your landlord may agree to accept a shorter notice period if they put it in writing.

For further details regarding minimum notice requirements, please refer to the South Australian Government website.

Summing up

If you’re happy with your current property, choosing a fixed-term agreement for another six to 12 months may be beneficial. However, remember that the property owner may require a tenant on a fixed term and terminate your lease if you choose not to renew.

If you prefer the flexibility of a periodic lease, it is worth considering.

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