Real estate bulletin issue 82 - Key date reminders relating to information for tenant forms, bond forms, and annual audits
20 March 2015
- From 20 March 2015 use the amended prescribed Form 1AC Information for Tenant and Form 1AD Information for Tenant with Non-written Tenancy Agreement now available on the Department of Commerce’s (the Department) website.
- Annual audit reports or statutory declarations need to be lodged by 5pm on 31 March 2015.
- From 1 April 2015 the submission of any outdated and unapproved forms to the Bond Administrator will not be accepted. Make sure you use the Bond Administration’s current forms, available online from www.commerce.wa.gov.au/bondforms or through your agency’s online portal.
Amended ‘Information for Tenant’ forms now available - use from 20 March 2015
As advised in e-Bulletin issue 79, the prescribed Form 1AC Information for Tenant and Form 1AD Information for Tenant with Non-written Tenancy Agreement have been amended in the Residential Tenancies Regulations 1989 to include two key child safety issues about pool safety barriers and blind/curtain cords and chains.
Property managers will need to ensure the amended forms, which are now available on the Department of Commerce’s website, are provided to all new tenants and used with all residential tenancy agreements which commence from 20 March 2015, to ensure compliance with section 27B of the Residential Tenancies Act 1987.
If a tenancy agreement is renewed or extended, Form 1AC and 1AD are not required to be provided to tenants so long as there has been no change to the parties to the agreement. However the Department suggests that a copy of the relevant information form be provided to the tenant even in these circumstances as a means of safety awareness.
If you have any queries in relation to the use of the amended information for tenant forms, please contact the Department on 1300 304 054 or email email@example.com
Reminder: trust account audit deadline
The Department reminds licensees and persons in bona fide control that annual audit reports or statutory declarations need to be lodged by 5pm on 31 March 2015.
You can lodge your audit report or statutory declaration by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by hand-delivering it to the Department’s reception at level 2, 140 William Street, Perth.
You may wish to familiarise yourself with the requirements of the process by reviewing the ‘Real Estate and Business Agents’ Trust Account Handbook’ as well as ‘A guide to auditing real estate and business agents’ trust accounts’.
Audit reports or statutory declarations will be returned to the auditor or agent if components are incomplete, incorrectly signed or if they have been completed by an auditor who has not been approved by the Commissioner. This can consume valuable time and could possibly lead to a late lodgement and become subject to investigation and penalties.
During the audit process, agents and auditors should keep records of correspondence with each other, including communication advising that records are ready for auditing and the date auditors attended the agent’s office. Records of files delivered to the auditor should also be kept, along with proof of correspondence, which may be helpful in cases of late lodgements.
Further reminders of matters that agents and auditors should look out for when preparing your audit report are available within e-Bulletin issue 78 which was distributed on 5 January 2015.
Reminder: use the current version of Bond Administration forms from 1 April 2015
As outlined within e-Bulletin issue 80, the Department wishes to remind agents and property managers that from 1 April 2015, the Bond Administrator will not accept any outdated versions of the security bond forms.
Outdated versions of the forms received by the Bond Administrator will be returned to the lessor or agent with notice that the correct form must be used. This may affect the timeframe for lodgement of a security bond which may result in a potential breach of the Residential Tenancies Act 1987.
Agents and property managers are requested to ensure that all portions of the security bond forms relevant to the situation are completed, including signing the form regardless of whether you believe the Bond Administrator holds a record of your signature or not.
The current versions of the security bond forms and information about security bonds are available on the Department’s website. Alternatively, you can access the most up to date forms by logging into BondsOnline, using your agency’s login credentials. Please note the Department is not currently able to create new agency accounts as the sign up process will change shortly due to new functionality that is set to be rolled out to BondsOnline users. Please keep an eye out for further information about Bonds eTransactions, the future of lodging, varying and applying for the disposal of security bonds electronically, without the need for paper forms.
If you have any queries about the processes related to security bonds, please contact the bond administration branch on 1300 853 829 or by email at email@example.com.
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