Peter's renting story

Riley Brooke • 06/04/2022

This week is our #MakeRentingFair #MyRentedHome social media week of action. We're asking our community of renters: what does your rented home mean to you? For more information and instructions on how to participate in the #MyRentedHome week of action, click here.

If you're not a renter yourself, you can join the action by sharing and amplifying other renters' stories - here's one you can share now.

Peter’s story

Water damage to Peter's ceiling
Water damage to Peter's ceiling

Peter* is an academic lecturer and researcher. He had been renting his apartment in the Eastern Suburbs for 6 years when he received a ‘no grounds’ eviction in October last year. The termination notice came soon after Peter asked his landlord to repair the significant water damage to the ceiling. As of April 2022 the landlord has not carried out the repairs.

"I’ve paid over $120,000 in rent to my landlord in the 6 years I’ve been here. I’ve looked after his property, and have never had any issues. I have a good rental history, but now I’m being evicted for no reason?

It’s caused me illness, it’s caused my mental health to plummet. And it’s even stopped me from working. I’ve had to take time off teaching, and now I’m being pushed out of my home."

Peter is now at high risk of homelessness. He has been unable to find a new rental home in the area that he can afford, and he is far past the date specified on the termination notice for him to vacate the property. He is now applying for properties further and further from the community he lives and works in, but hasn’t yet found a new home.

"We’re not protected at all. They do this just because they can. My landlord doesn’t need my home right now, he’s not moving into it, he’s a property investor. And they don’t have to give any reason at all!

"I haven’t had to apply for properties for 6 years. Now we’re in rental crisis, the entire rental market is different, not to mention the massive impact of the pandemic. All tenants are more vulnerable now, I’m at risk of homelessness. I’ll have to move in with a friend, sleep on couches, or use an AirBnB when I can.

"I am in the process of moving the contents of my 2 bedroom apartment of 6 years into storage and still actively seeking accommodation. It's been ruthless. Meanwhile, the property investor will likely touch up the apartment and increase the rent to lock in new tenants. We must abolish the termination on no grounds tenancy clause which allows this to happen to tenants once and for all."

Peter is now receiving assistance from his local Tenants' Advice and Advocacy Service.

*Name changed for anonymity.

#MyRentedHome should be safe and healthy