A rental bond is a security deposit paid at the start of the tenancy.
If the property manager/owner takes a bond, they must give the tenant a receipt and lodge it with the RTA within 10 days. It is an offence not to do so.
A rental bond is lodged with the RTA online, or by post, using a Bond lodgement (Form 2).
The bond is paid back to the tenant when the property is vacated, provided no money is owed for rent, damages or other costs.
Important: From 1 February 2020, Web Services will replace the PDF upload facility for paper bond refunds. The ability to view bonds and lodge 100% tenant refunds through eServices will remain.
How much bond can be taken?
For general tenancies the law says if the rent is $700 or less per week, the maximum bond amount is 4 weeks rent. If the weekly rent is higher than $700, the amount of bond should be negotiated between the property manager/owner and tenant. The law gives no maximum amount where the weekly rent is higher than $700.
For moveable dwelling tenancies, the maximum bond is the same as 2 weeks rent, or if the electricity is connected to the premises in the owner’s name, 3 weeks rent.
The maximum amounts stated in the Act apply to all bonds, no matter what they are called (e.g. pet bond) or how many bonds are taken.
There are different rules where accommodation is provided by an employer. Check with the RTA for more information.
Bond loans and rental grants
The Department of Housing and Public Works provides rental bond loans and rental grants to eligible tenants.
A bond loan is an interest-free loan (maximum of 4 weeks rent) for eligible people who cannot afford to pay a full rental bond. It must be repaid.
Pre-approved bond loans for people thinking about renting in the near future are also available online. Approved applicants will be provided with a pre-approval letter to demonstrate to the property manager/owner they have the funds for the bond.
Existing bond loan balances can be checked at https://www.hpw.qld.gov.au/blbs/
A rental grant is a one-off grant of 2 weeks rent to help meet some of the costs of moving into rental accommodation. This grant helps people experiencing a housing crisis and does not have to be repaid.
RentConnect provides practical advice and information on how to find and apply for a suitable property. The service also helps people fill out a rental application and links them to local real estate agents and community services.