Share homes, co-tenancies and sub-letting
The property manager/owner must give permission for everyone living at a rental property, even if they are not listed on the tenancy agreement as a tenant. Approved occupants should be listed in the special terms of the agreement.
When 2 or more people are named as tenants on a tenancy agreement they are known as co-tenants.
Co-tenants can be jointly, or individually, liable for all the rent and the full cost of any compensation owed to the property manager/owner if the agreement is breached.
If a co-tenant leaves during the tenancy, they will need to get their share of the bond from the tenant moving in, or those remaining. They must also complete a Change of bond contributors (Form 6), and lodge it with the RTA. However, if all the tenants move out they need to complete a Refund of rental bond (Form 4).
When a tenant named on an agreement gives another person the right to rent part, or all, of the property they are called a head-tenant. They have the same responsibilities as a property manager/owner.
A tenant should get written approval from the property manager/owner before they sub-let the property. Any agreement between a head-tenant and sub-tenant should be in writing.
Whether occupants are co-tenants or sub-tenants depends on their specific circumstances and what has been agreed.
If there is uncertainty about whether a person is classified as a tenant or a sub-tenant, call the RTA or make an urgent application to QCAT for a decision.
The property manager/owner is not responsible for resolving disputes between tenants.
The Act does not apply to residential tenancy agreements for boarders or lodgers. However, if a boarder/lodger pays a bond it must be lodged with the RTA and the person paying the bond must be given a receipt.
If there is uncertainty about whether a person is classified as a boarder/lodger or a tenant under the Act, call the RTA or make an urgent application to QCAT for a decision.
All bonds must be lodged with the RTA using the Bond lodgement (Form 2), even when sub-letting (or in boarder/lodger situations), failure to do so is an offence.
All bond contributors must be listed on the form along with the amount paid.
The person receiving the bond must give a receipt to the person paying the bond; this could be the property manager/owner or head-tenant.
Sharing the bills
It is a good idea to include arrangements for sharing bills (e.g. gas, electricity or internet) in the tenancy agreement.
Leaving the property
Before leaving a share home, tenants should pay their share of any costs for cleaning, damage or unpaid rent.