ACT Rights and Obligations during the Tenancy

Landlords and tenants have various rights and obligations during the tenancy agreement. These include paying for utilities, repairs and maintenance, and security.

This guide covers landlords (or head-tenants) and tenants (or sub-tenants) in a Residential Tenancy. This applies to the majority of share accommodation and residential property rental situations. To confirm it covers your situation visit What is my share accommodation situation?

Are there any pre-contractual obligations for landlords and tenants?

Under ACT law, there are a number of obligations the landlord and tenant must fulfil before they sign the tenancy agreement. These include supplying names and contact details.

Read more about Pre-contractual Obligations

Who is responsible for utility fees and other charges?

Various different charges arise during the tenancy for the premises. Landlords pay for all government rates and taxes like land taxes, and council rates. Tenants are liable for consumption charges for services like water and electricity if they are separately metered for their usage.

Read more about Fees and Charges

What rights and obligations do tenants have?

Throughout the tenancy, the tenant has a number of rights owed to them by the landlord, as well as various obligations they must fulfil. For example, the tenant has the right to live at the rented premises without any interference by the landlord. The tenant is also under an obligation to keep the premises clean.

Read more about Tenants’ Rights and Obligations

When can the landlord enter the premises?

During the tenancy, the landlord may need to enter the premises for a particular reason. Importantly, landlords can only enter under a certain number of circumstances. If the tenant consents, the landlord can enter at any time. If the tenant does not consent, then the landlord can only enter for specific reasons, for instance to conduct repairs.

Read more about the Landlord’s Rights to Enter the Premises

Who is responsible for repairs and maintenance?

Landlords are under a general obligation to provide and maintain the premises in a reasonable state of repair throughout the tenancy. Therefore, it is generally the landlord’s responsibility to conduct or arrange for repairs. In the case of urgent repairs, the landlord should generally be given the first opportunity to conduct the repairs. The tenant can be reimbursed for any costs they have borne for urgent repairs.

Read more about Repairs and Maintenance

When can alterations or additions be made to the premises?

Before the tenant installs any fixtures or makes any structural alterations to the premises, they must get the landlord’s consent. If the tenant damages the premises while removing any fixtures, they will need to either fix the damage themselves or compensate the landlord.

Read more about Alterations and Additions

Who is responsible for security?

The landlord is responsible for providing and maintaining the premises in a reasonably secure state. Generally, if the locks need to be changed by the landlord or tenant they should get the consent of the other party.

Read more about Security and Locks


These legal guides provide a brief summary and introduction of the laws and regulations affecting share accommodation. They do not cover all cases in all legal jurisdictions and might not apply in your specific share accommodation situation. It is important that you use this information as a guide only and seek independent Legal Advice or consult the Relevant Acts. We do not accept any liability that may arise from the use of this information.