If you’re renting a property in Victoria during the COVID-19 pandemic, here’s where to get tenancy support.
For more information on the current restrictions, news updates and FAQs, visit the Victorian Government website.
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I’m renting. Where can I get help?
If you’re looking for extra tenancy support in Victoria, these organisations may be able to assist you in a range of areas.
|National Debt Hotline||1800 007 007. Weekdays, 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM.||National Debt Hotline|
|Salvation Army||13 72 58||Salvation Army|
|‘Ask Izzy’ search tool (find local services in your area)||N/A||Ask Izzy|
|Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre||1800 015 188, 24/7||Safe Steps|
|Financial and other support (Victorian Government)||N/A||Coronavirus.vic.gov.au|
|Lifeline Australia||13 11 14, 24/7||Lifeline Australia|
Victorian COVID-19 renter protections (past and current)
The Victorian Government’s temporary COVID-19 renter protections ended at midnight on 28 March 2021. These protections included the end of the eviction moratorium, rent reduction mediation service, rent relief grant scheme, and freeze on rent rises.
- Eviction moratorium: If you were renting and fell behind in rent due to financial hardship resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, you were protected by the moratorium on giving notices to vacate. The moratorium ended at midnight on 28 March 2021.
- Rent reduction mediation service: The rent reduction mediation service was designed to help you negotiate lower rents with your rental providers (landlords) under the Victorian Government’s Residential Tenancies Dispute Resolution Scheme. This service ended at midnight on 28 March 2021.
- Notice periods for renters: Under the temporary protections, the notice period for tenants who needed to end their tenancy due to COVID-19 hardship was reduced to 14 days. This period ended at midnight on 28 March 2021.
- Family violence: Protection for family violence victims continues. Shortened notice periods and protection from lease break and compensation claims for renters who needed to end their tenancy due to family violence and hardship before midnight on 28 March 2021 still apply.
- Rent relief grants: The Victorian Government made available a rent relief grant, a subsidy up to $3,000 for renters who had negotiated rent reduction agreements but were still paying more than 30% of their income as rent. If you had already made rent reduction agreements and/or had a referral number from Consumer Affairs Victoria by midnight on 28 March 2021, you can still apply. If you had a dispute registered with Consumer Affairs Victoria and were referred to VCAT, you may also be able to apply if VCAT makes an order. The Department of Families, Fairness and Housing will continue to assess these applications and deal with other matters relating to the grant. More information is available on the Housing VIC website.
- Rent increase freeze: The freeze on rent increases ended at midnight on 28 March 2021. Your rental provider can now serve you with a Notice of Rent Increase. The minimum notice time is 60 days. If you started your tenancy after 19 June 2019, your rental provider can only increase your rent once in 12 months. If your tenancy started before that date, six-monthly rent increases can still occur.
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