The purpose of this policy is to explain the circumstances and action to be taken when a tenant ends a tenancy or Homes North ends a tenancy.
This policy applies to all tenancies managed by Homes North.
The aim of this policy is to:
Homes North will:
There are many reasons for a tenancy ending.
If a tenant wants to end a residential tenancy agreement they are required to provide the landlord with a termination notice giving the following amount of notice in accordance with the Residential Tenancies Act 2010.
Homes North may, at its discretion, agree to lesser periods of notice. All such decisions will be made by the Operations Manager.
When a joint tenancy is ended by one tenant, the existing tenancy will be terminated and arrangements will be made with the remaining tenant. This may include signing a new tenancy agreement for the current property or transferring the remaining household to a more suitable property.
Circumstances leading to the tenancy being ended by Homes North include, but are not limited to:
A tenant may be asked to move from their current property for management reasons. Management reasons may include:
Homes North describes the management transfer process in full in the Homes North Transfers Policy section 4.2.8 Management Transfer: Relocating tenants for management purposes and 4.3 Management transfer from leasehold properties.
Under section 85 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 a landlord may issue a notice of termination for a periodic agreement provided that not less than 90 days notice is given.
Homes North will only issue a notice of termination under section 85 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 in the following circumstances:
For further information refer to Homes North No Cause Terminations Policy
Homes North will consider that a tenant has abandoned a property only if it is clear that the tenant is not living there. Homes North usually finds out that a tenant has abandoned their property through:
If Homes North suspects a tenant has left their property without giving notice, it will inspect the property and make enquiries to find out if the tenant has abandoned it. If Homes North is reasonably sure the tenant has abandoned the property, it will start action to take possession of the property under Section 106 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 so that it can make the property available for another tenant. Homes North has the right to seek compensation at the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal for loss of rental income and property damage.
If goods remain in the home two working days after the tenant has moved out, or when a property is abandoned, an officer from Homes North and a witness (where possible) will inspect the property. The inspection will involve:
Homes North is then required by the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 (Section 127) to give the former tenant notice that the goods will be disposed of after 14 days. This Notice may be given in the following ways:
If the goods are not collected within 14 days, Homes North can arrange for disposal of the goods by selling them or in any other lawful manner.
Any proceeds of sale, less occupation fees and reasonable costs of sale, can be provided to the former tenant.
If an item is on hire, Homes North will notify the company who owns it and arrange for the company to collect it.
The former tenant can claim and collect some or all of the goods while they are in storage. Where the former tenant claims goods, they must pay an occupation fee per day for each day the goods are left on the property or in storage, which at a maximum is equivalent to the rent per day, and must not exceed, in total, the amount of rent for 14 days.
Under no circumstances will Homes North give or sell any goods to an employee of Homes North, their relatives, friends, or agents.
Where personal documents remain in the property 2 working days after the tenant has moved out, or when a property is abandoned, Homes North is required by the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 (Section 127) to give the tenant notice that the documents will be disposed of after 90 days.
Personal documents include:
If these documents are not claimed within 90 days, Homes North will return personal documents to the authority that issued them or if this is not practical, dispose of them in a lawful manner that will not result in the tenant’s personal information becoming publicly available.
Homes North can seek direction from the NCAT under the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 (section 133) if any issues arise as to the disposal of goods.
If an AVO prohibits a tenant or co-tenant from having access to the property, the tenancy of that tenant or co-tenant under the residential tenancy agreement is terminated. Such a termination does not affect the tenancy of any tenants/co-tenants that are not subject to the AVO.
On the death of a sole tenant rent and non-rent balances are adjusted to the date the tenant passed away. The tenancy ends when vacant possession is given, either on or prior to the date of termination.
See Homes North Deceased Tenant Policy
Certain programs have a maximum period of tenure or specific criteria that tenants must meet in order to remain eligible to continue for housing under that program.
When a tenant is no longer eligible because they have exceeded the maximum term or have failed to continue to meet the eligibility criteria, Homes North will end the tenancy in accordance with the relevant section of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010, including ending the tenancy under section 85 as necessary.
4.10 Legal minimum notice periods
In situations of eviction, a landlord is required to give the following written notice of termination in accordance with the Residential Tenancies Act 2010:
4.11 Service of notices
Homes North will serve notices in accordance with the requirements of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010.
A notice to a person must be in writing and may be served by:
If the tenant has not moved out by the date specified on the notice, Homes North has 30 days to apply to the NCAT for an order terminating the agreement and an Order of Possession. An Order of Possession must only be obtained from the NCAT with prior approval from the Operations Manager.
Tenants can only be physically removed from premises by a Sheriff once a Warrant of Possession has been obtained from the NCAT. If the tenant fails to move out by the date specified on the Order of Possession, Homes North may apply for a Warrant of Possession. A Warrant of Possession must only be obtained with prior approval from the Operations Manager.
4.12 Homes North responsibilities
When a tenancy ends, the tenant can expect Homes North to:
4.13 End of tenancy cleaning and repairs
The tenant is responsible for returning the property to the landlord in the condition that it was in at the start of the tenancy (excluding fair wear and tear). After conducting the end of tenancy inspection, Homes North will discuss any tenant damage, cleaning issues, or unauthorised works with the tenant. The tenant will be given the opportunity to rectify any outstanding issues. The tenant will be given a reasonable opportunity to carry out the cleaning/repairs. A daily occupation fee will be charged for each day the tenant has possession of the premises. If the tenant declines the request to rectify the cleaning, gardening or repairs, Homes North will engage a contractor to carry out the work and the costs will be charged to the tenant.
4.14 Debt, rent arrears and end of tenancy charges
If a tenant vacates a property and the Sheriff’s fee, outstanding rent arrears, debt or the cost of end of tenancy cleaning, gardening and/or repairs exceeds $500, Homes North will apply to the NCAT for an order for compensation.
Homes North will request a certified copy of any orders made through NCAT. If the amount owing exceeds the jurisdiction of NCAT, Home North may take alternative legal action such as lodging an application for compensation with the Local Court.
Homes North may record the debt of a former tenant on the NSW Housing Register where permitted by law.
4.15 Final rent payment
The tenant is required to pay rent until the date that the property is handed back.
4.16 Tenant Exit Survey
Homes North will seek feedback from tenants at the end of their tenancy. The information obtained will be used to assist with continuous improvement.
Refer to the Homes North Appeals Policy for further information.
It is the responsibility of the:
Policy no: 1.4.1\2 Version: V2
Date last reviewed: January 2019