What is a bond and how much can be charged?
A security bond is a payment made in advance by a tenant to cover any costs for which the tenant may be liable at the end of the tenancy, such as damage to the property or chattels, outstanding water usage charges or unpaid rent. When a tenant pays the bond, the lessor must give a receipt on the spot, showing the:
- name/s of those who paid,
- date and
- address of the rental premises.
The bond is the tenant's money and must be lodged with the Bond Administrator (Consumer Protection) until the end of the tenancy. If more than one person has paid the bond (such as in a shared house), it is important the names of all the parties appear on the lodgement form, to protect everyone’s share. The Bond Administrator will send a record of payment of security bond directly to the tenant/s.
If the tenant is permitted to keep pets capable of carrying parasites which can affect humans a pet bond can be charged. However, lessors can not charge a pet bond for an assistance dog.
Are you using the right bond form?
You must submit the most current form when doing a bond transaction for residential tenancies and residential park tenancies. Submissions using old, or unapproved, forms will not be accepted and will be returned.
Residential tenancy bond amount
The bond must not be more than four times the weekly rent; unless the weekly rent is more than $1200 per week.
Residential parks long-stay tenancy bond amount
The security bond must not be more than four times the weekly rent.
A long-stay security access bond of no more than $100 may be required for keys, remote control entry devices or other security devices.
Some tenants will arrange for the security bond to be paid to the owner (or their agent) on their behalf by the Housing Authority (formerly the Department of Housing or Homeswest). In effect, this money is a personal loan from the Housing Authority to the tenant to help them rent in the private sector. A security bond provided by the Housing Authority must be dealt with like any other person's bond.
Bond replacement products
Tenants are advised to be wary of products advertised as cheaper alternatives to rental bonds, known as bond replacement products. They are not legal in Western Australia.
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