Our rental market is broken and it’s time to take urgent action to improve conditions for the 31% of West Australians who rent.
With an increasing proportion of Western Australians now seeing renting as their only option, improving the conditions of our rental housing as well as the rights of tenants is well overdue.
While rental prices have decreased recently, there is still a severe lack of affordable rentals for low-income earners. Couple this with a decline in social housing stock, and an increasing number of older people (particularly women) being forced into private rentals, it’s no surprise that so many Western Australians are living in rental stress.
The Greens (WA) are working to deliver a more equitable playing field that is fair to both landlords and renters by:
- Increasing security of tenure – we will end no-grounds evictions so that landlords can only terminate a lease in certain circumstances, and enable long-term leases that give tenants certainty without the threat of onerous break-least costs.
- Ensuring stable, affordable and fair rental prices – we will restrict the frequency of rent increases and cap increases according to CPI and median wage growth.
- Introducing minimum standards for security, maintenance and energy efficiency – there are currently no minimum standards for rental properties. Tenants deserve to feel secure in their own home, and to have adequate insulation, heating and cooling. Reduced power bills from energy efficient appliances and solar PV should be available to low-income renters.
- Allowing tenants to make their house a home – it’s difficult to feel ‘at home’ when you can’t even make simple cosmetic changes to your property. We will allow minor renovations, such as hanging pictures and installing shelves. We will also ban ‘no-pets’ clauses so that tenants don’t have to choose between their pets and their home.
- Introducing better protections for vulnerable groups – we want to improve the rights of those who are most at risk, such as boarders, lodgers and students living in on-campus accommodation.
A Stronger Voice for Tenants
The only support, legal advice and advocacy available to tenants in WA comes from Tenancy WA and other community legal centres throughout the state. They assist around 5,000 people every year, yet another 5,000 calls for assistance go unmet.
The Greens (WA) will fight for an additional $1 million dollars per year to Tenancy WA to help them provide a stronger voice for tenants.