Five clauses you may not have clocked in your rental agreement


Regardless of whether it’s your first time renting or your 50th, it’s important to read the rental agreement top to bottom.

This legal document sets out the terms and conditions that you need to adhere to while residing at the property and is the prime paperwork that guides the rights and responsibilities of each party.

And it begs the question, how well do you know your rental agreement? Because there might be conditions you’ve overlooked or missed.

Here are five clauses you may not have clocked in your rental agreement…

Sub-letting

In most rental agreements, there’s a standard clause about sub-letting. This clause indicates you cannot rent the property (or part of the property) to anyone else without the written permission of the owner, and this includes renting out the property on short-term letting platforms such as Airbnb.

Meanwhile, it’s important to note, only the people listed on the rental agreement have the legal right to reside at the residence.

Should anyone else stay there long-term, they need approval and should be included on the agreement.

Running a business

Whether it’s music lessons, a small nursery or beauty services, running a business from a rental property requires permission.

And there’s good reason for this. Depending on the type of business, there can be implications, such as a need for parking, Council approval, or additional insurance.

Pets

Australia is a pet-loving nation, but if you have a four-legged, furry or feathered friend that you plan to have reside at your rental, you will need permission.

These days gaining that permission is a lot easier than in the past, but it is still required and keeping a pet at a property without this approval is considered a serious breach.

Portable pools

This clause is one that some people may not be aware of, but it’s in the standard rental agreements of most states and territories for good reason: if you have a portable pool that is deeper than 300mm, you will need written permission.

The reason for this is pool laws. Swimming pools with a depth of 300mm or greater require proper fencing and signage.

Smoke alarms

Over the past decade, smoke alarms have become standard in rental properties across the country and in most states and territories there is a clause about how these alarms should be looked after and maintained.

This clause often specifies that the renter is not to disconnect the smoke alarms, that they should test them regularly and ensure they are fitted with a working battery.

Special conditions

In addition to the clauses that are standard across most rental agreements, there may also be special conditions attached to your particular property.

These conditions can vary, but might include specific instructions on how something is to be maintained, areas of the property that are off-limits, or specific extras that are included in the agreement.

They may also relate to things you can and cannot do.

For example, some rental agreements might specify that the renter should protect any wooden floors at a property by having felt on the base of their furniture.

Others might have a special clause about unregistered cars, indicating they can not be parked at the residence.

There might also be special conditions about who maintains the gardens or swimming pool.

How well do you know your agreement?

It may seem like a standard document, but it’s important to read your rental agreement thoroughly prior to signing it.

This document sets out the rights and obligations of all parties in the rental process, along with any special conditions that are specific to your property during your time residing there.

When you know your agreement well, it mitigates potential issues, ensuring a smooth and stress-free experience residing in that property.

How we can help

Our experienced property managers pride themselves on establishing great relationships with both rental occupiers and owners.

We manage every property as if it were our own and you can learn more about our property management services here.

Alternatively, if you are looking to rent a property, you can view the properties we currently have available here.