Having a written agreement can help prevent disputes which may occur in share accommodation. An agreement eliminates misunderstandings caused by terms not being discussed or that maybe forgotten over time.
Before you get started with a tenancy agreement you should download and print our Pre-Agreement Checklist. This checklist will ensure you have discussed and agreed on the important terms of the tenancy.
Tenants and landlords entering share accommodation should also sign a tenancy agreement. Most states have a standard form tenancy agreement provided by the state government and we provide links to download these agreements for free on our state and territory guides linked below.
Using the standard form tenancy agreement for your state or territory is the best way to secure your tenancy and prevent problems from arising
There is no increased legal flexibility by not signing an agreement because residential property law cannot be opted out of and covers oral agreements as well so its in your best interest to read and understand the agreement.
For the laws on residential tenancies to apply to your agreement, the tenant must be paying rent in return for the right to use the premises. If the premises is provided for free, then the laws on residential tenancies will not apply.
Important things to remember in share accommodation tenancy agreements?
If the tenant is renting a room in a share house, it is very important that the agreement detail which parts of the premises the tenant has exclusive possession of, and which parts the tenant has shared use of.
A common situation is for the tenant to have exclusive possession of their own bedroom and shared use of kitchen, bathroom and laundry facilities. By describing in the agreement which parts of the property the tenant does and does not have exclusive possession over, the rights and obligations of all parties are guaranteed.
Read more & download a free agreement for your state
Transferring money safely
When paying your deposit, bond or rent by cash make sure you get a receipt. With modern phones this can be as simple as an SMS or email confirming the amount, date and what it is for. Keep a copy of this incase you need it later.
Never ever transfer money to a bank account outside of Australia or use a untraceable money transfer system such as WESTERN UNION. If anyone asks you to do this on any website it is likely to be a scam and you are almost guaranteed to lose your money.
If this ever happens on Flatmates.com.au report the member immediately so we can investigate and take the appropriate action.
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.