Resolving rental property issues
If you’re unhappy with the way the tenancy is going, for example the care or maintenance of the property or rent payments and inspections, try to sort out the issue amicably first.
If you still can’t agree, Consumer Protection may be able to help you sort things out in a more structured way.
In this case a tenant can lodge a formal complaint and the department will then act as an informal negotiator. When the department receives the complaint, it will look at it to decide:
- what the dispute is about and options for helping to resolve the issue;
- if there is any applicable law that may have been broken; or
- whether the matter would be better handled by another organisation – in this case the department will refer you to the most appropriate organisation.
How it works
Consumer Protection will contact each person involved in the dispute to try and find a satisfactory resolution. While the aim is to resolve most complaints within 30 days, this isn’t always possible if the issue is complicated or there is a lack of co-operation. Consumer Protection cannot order or direct anyone to resolve the complaint; only a court or a tribunal can do this.
If the complaint isn't resolved
If a mutual agreement is not possible, you will be told about other options that may help, for example the Magistrates Court, other government departments or independent legal advice.
What if the law has been broken?
In this case, Consumer Protection will inform the landlord or real estate agent and try to remedy the situation. More action will also be considered if it is necessary to protect other consumers. This may not help to resolve your particular dispute but it will help to prevent future problems for you and for other consumers.
Help is available for residential tenants who need further advice, require assistance in negotiating with their landlord or property manager, or have a tenancy-related legal issue through the Tenancy Advice and Education Service (TAES).