Tenants' Union news

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Tenants' Union hopes newly appointed Rental Commissioner will elevate the conversation about renting in NSW

Tue, 11/07/2023 - 07:32
Coastal town in NSW, aerial shot. Image: Bailey Clark @blclark
The Tenants’ Union of NSW congratulates and welcomes the newly appointed NSW Rental Commissioner, Trina Jones. The Rental Commissioner will play an important role in elevating the conversation we have about renting in NSW. This can only be achieved through strong collaboration and consultation with all stakeholders, while ensuring that renters’ voices and experiences remain at the forefront.
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Co-operative housing: Interview with co-op renter Amalina Wallace

Thu, 29/06/2023 - 14:08
A woman sits on a red couch, smiling at the camera.
Amalina Wallace is a founding member of Erskineville’s Eroh Ruo housing co-operative. She spoke with the Tenants’ Union about her experiences establishing and living in housing co-ops over the years.
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Joint statement: NSW Government urged to ease pressure on renting households

Tue, 27/06/2023 - 06:30
House key chain being held over the horizon
A Joint Statement by Tenants’ Union of NSW, Shelter NSW, Housing Action for the Aged Group and the NSW Council of Social Services (NCOSS) 
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A little gnome fact

Wed, 21/06/2023 - 16:36
Gnome with posters
The Tenants’ Union and Tenants’ Advice and Advocacy Services have a long history with garden gnomes. Several gnomes are scattered throughout our office, honouring their role in a collective act of rebellion against unreasonable rules including a ‘gnome-ban’ in a residential land-lease community. Yet the work of one professor suggests garden gnomes have an even deeper connection to the abuse of power in housing.
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Outasite - land lease communities magazine

Tue, 20/06/2023 - 22:11
Outasite logo
The Tenants' Union has just published issue 9 of Outasite – our print publication for land lease communities! It has been delivered to mailboxes in communities all over NSW.
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Lessons from USA Mobile Home Parks

Tue, 20/06/2023 - 15:00
People visiting Terrigal Sands land lease community
In the USA, the equivalent of residential land lease communities (RLLCs) are called mobile home parks. In 2022 the number of residents living in mobile home parks in the USA was more than twenty million. As is the case in NSW the majority of residents in these mobile home parks are home owners.
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Sustainable Energy should be an option for all residents

Tue, 20/06/2023 - 13:07
A home with solar panels on the roof
At the Tenants’ Union we are increasingly receiving calls from home owners who are finding roadblocks in the way of switching their homes to renewable energy in the form of rooftop solar panels. There are government programs available in NSW at the moment that make switching to solar energy an affordable option for many home owners in land lease communities. Unfortunately it’s not always an easy path if you want to have solar panels installed on your home.
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Crown Land not an excuse to evade rights of home owners

Tue, 20/06/2023 - 11:49
Caravan home with awning
In NSW more than half of the land in the state is Crown Land. It is owned by the NSW State Government. In NSW there are many residential land lease communities which are located on Crown Land. These communities are usually managed by the operator of the land lease community as Crown Land manager under a lease, license or permit. Crown Land managers are mostly local councils or non council trustees.
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Buyer Beware: home ownership in land lease communities

Tue, 20/06/2023 - 09:02
homes in a land lease community
When someone is buying into a residential land lease community (RLLC) the home purchased is either from the current home owner (vendor/ seller) or from the operator of the community selling a home. Over the past few months the Tenants’ Union has received a number of queries from residents and from advocates (acting on behalf of prospective residents or for current home owners).
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Holding operators to account when on fixed method site fee increases

Tue, 20/06/2023 - 07:38
Outasite logo
In our last edition of Outasite we discussed the trend toward fixed method site fee increases. One of the downsides to this method that we highlighted is there is less incentive for operators to spend money maintaining the community. The fixed method site fee increase cannot be challenged at the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) in the same way as the by notice site fee increase. There is no way to dispute the amount of a fixed method increase even if the operator has clearly not been spending money maintaining the community.
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