Changes to the New South Wales Residential Tenancies Regulation

Thursday 14 May 2020

On March 23, 2020, reforms to the New South Wales Residential Tenancies Regulation came into effect, giving greater definition to what makes a rental property considered liveable.

If you own a rental property, or if you’re thinking about buying a rental property, it is worth understanding your obligations as a landlord. Most importantly:

Is the property reasonably clean and fit to live in?

  • Does it have natural or artificial lighting in each room other than storage or a garage?
  • Does it have adequate ventilation?
  • Does it have a supply of electricity or gas and have a reasonable amount of electricity or gas outlet sockets for the supply of lighting, heating and use of appliances?
  • Does it have adequate plumbing and drainage?
  • It is connected to a water supply service, or infrastructure that supplies water that is able to provide hot and cold water for drinking, washing and cleaning?
  • Does it have bathroom facilities for washing, and a toilet that allows privacy for the user?

Is the property structurally sound?

This means that the floors, ceilings, walls, supporting structures including foundations, doors, windows, roof, stairs, balconies, balustrades and railings are all in reasonable repair. That the floors, ceilings, walls and supporting structures are not subject to significant dampness, and that the roof ceilings and windows do not allow water into the property and are not liable to collapse because they are rotted or otherwise defective.

To make sure your property is structurally sound, at the beginning of each tenancy a building inspection should be conducted. 

Smoke alarms

Smoke alarms are an important safety feature, and must be installed in accordance with Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979. They be checked annually to ensure they are still functioning. The smoke alarm must be replaced within two business days of the landlord being made aware of the smoke alarm failing.

So what does that mean?

Even if you already own a rental property, you still have obligations as a landlord to ensure that the property meets the standards for being considered habitable. Upon viewing the property, your friendly First National Property Manager can advise you of what steps need to be taken for the property to be rented out.

Do you have more questions on the changes to the New South Wales Residential Tenancies Regulation in regards to your investment property? Contact us on or visit our facebook page.

First National Real Estate Murwillumbah specialise in Property Management in Murwillumbah and surrounding suburbs.
To view our current properties available for rent click here
To meet our First National team click here