This guide covers common questions about renting during Coronavirus COVID-19 in NSW.
The Tenants' Union of NSW is working hard to keep this information as up to date as possible. We'll be regularly adding to and amending the guide as things change. The legal information provided here does not constitute legal advice. Always, seek advice from your local Tenants' Advice and Advocacy Service about your options – tenants.org.au/get-advice.
The Renters' Guide to COVID-19 has been developed to provide legal information about situations that may arise as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. It should be read alongside and in addition to the legal information and resources provided on your legal rights and obligations in our general tenancy fact sheets.
On 15 April 2020, the NSW government introduced a moratorium on evictions – for some tenants.
The moratorium is in two stages and applies to tenants who have suffered a reduction of 25% or more in their weekly household income due to COVID-19 and are struggling to meet their rent payments.
The first stage of the moratorium, which ended on 13 June 2020, prevented tenants who were financially impacted by COVID-19 from being evicted on the basis of rent arrears.
During the current second stage of the moratorium, tenancies may be terminated on the basis of rent arrears caused by COVID-19 IF tenants and landlords have failed in their formal negotiations for a rent reduction and the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) decides it is ‘fair and reasonable’ based on the circumstances of the case.
The NSW moratorium on evictions has been extended, and will now end on 26 March 2021.
The moratorium does not apply to social housing tenants. If you are a social housing tenant please see COVID Guide: 'Social Housing'.
In order to provide more help for renters impacted by COVID-19 and/or in bushfire impacted areas , the Tenant's Union has increased the hours of our Advice Line. The Advice Line now operates 10am-1pm and 2pm-5pm, Monday-Friday. You can call the Tenants' Advice line on 1800 251 101. You can also get advice from your local Tenants Advice and Advocacy Service,
Not in NSW? See services around Australia
The Tenants' Union has also produced a short factsheet in 7 community languages summarising renters' rights during COVID-19. The factsheet has information on paying rent, evictions, the rules on access to rented properties for getting repairs done, inspections for sale of premises, and other issues that renters are facing.
This flowchart summarises the steps that you may take if you are a renter impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
To expand each section tap on the headings here (better for mobile), or download the pdf here.