Residential tenancies - COVID-19 response

What the end of the emergency period means for tenants and landlords

The extended COVID-19 emergency period has ended, which means the ordinary tenancy laws under the Residential Tenancies Act 1987 (WA) apply again. 

Landlords and tenants are encouraged to act and negotiate in good faith to agree on reasonable and workable tenancy arrangements, helping to create a safe and secure renting future for everyone.

Tenants are encouraged to contact Consumer Protection to seek advice and report unlawful evictions.

Consumer Protection has created a range of resources to help landlords and tenants with renting matters now the emergency period has ended:

Circle Green Community Legal also has a series of helpful COVID-19 and renting fact sheets.

The frequently asked questions below provide information about the COVID-19 rent laws. 

Topic categories

Terms we use on this page

Landlord = lessors, property managers, owners, park operators, and providers of boarding and lodging accommodation.

Tenant = all tenants in private rental homes, public, social, community and government officer housing; long-stay residents in residential parks; and boarders and lodgers.


About COVID-19 rent laws

When was the emergency period?

The emergency period was from 30 March 2020 to 28 March 2021.  

How did the moratorium on evictions affect WA landlords and renters?

The Residential Tenancies (COVID-19 Response) Act 2020 put into place a moratorium on evictions and other measures relating to residential tenancies to address the financial impacts of COVID-19.

Renters could still have their leases terminated and be evicted if they were causing serious damage to the property, posing a threat to the landlord or neighbours, not paying rent when they were not in financial hardship due to COVID-19, refusing to make a rent payment agreement with their landlord or if they abandoned the property. Provisions supporting victims of family and domestic violence continued to apply.

Other elements of the laws included:

  • a ban on rent increases during the moratorium period;
  • fixed-term tenancies automatically converted to periodic tenancies if they expired during the period unless another fixed-term agreement was entered into;
  • landlords did not have to carry out non-urgent repairs if they themselves were experiencing financial hardship or were not able to access the premises due to restrictions on movement; and
  • renters experiencing COVID-19 related financial hardship who ended a fixed-term tenancy prior to its end date did not incur break lease fees, but were still liable for damage and rent arrears. 

The laws applied to all residential tenancies including those in public and government housing, park homes as well as boarders and lodgers.

What happens now the emergency period has ended?

Some provisions of the Residential Tenancies (COVID-19 Response) Act 2020, like the ban on rent increases, ended the day after the emergency period finished. Rent may not be increased more than each six months.

Other provisions, like repayment arrangements, could continue for months beyond the end of the emergency period.

You can contact Consumer Protection for information about your specific situation by calling 1300 304 054 or via email to consumer@dmirs.wa.gov.au.

Residential Rent Relief Grant Scheme

The Residential Rent Relief Grant Scheme has expanded to offer future rent support for tenants who are struggling financially to meet an increase in rent payments now the emergency period has ended.

Rents arrears assistance grants are also still available to help tenants pay their outstanding rent debt that arose before 1 December 2020. Applications close on 31 December 2021.

Visit the Residential Rent Relief Grant Scheme page for details and to apply. 

Residential Tenancies Mandatory Conciliation Service

The Residential Tenancies Mandatory Conciliation Service (RTMCS) was introduced by the WA Government to help landlords and renters reach agreement about COVID-19 renting disputes without going to court. The RTMCS ceased accepting applications on 29 June 2021. Applications received prior to 29 June 2021 will be processed.

Landlords and tenants are encouraged to act and negotiate in good faith to agree on reasonable and workable tenancy arrangements, helping to create a safe and secure renting future for everyone. 

For more information on resolving rental property issues visit Resolving rental property issues. Contact us if you are having difficulty reaching agreement or require assistance with a rental issue.

For further advice and assistance

The information provided on this page was accurate at the time of publishing, but may change without notice and be updated by Consumer Protection WA at any time.

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