How to be a better landlord during COVID-19

Signing a tenancy agreement

One in three Australian households are renting and with many people being hit by the global pandemic, paying the rent has, for some, become difficult at best and impossible at worst.

The University’s Professor of Housing Research Emma Baker has looked at how landlords and tenants are handling the present situation.

Professor Baker and her colleague Professor Rebecca Bentley asked stakeholders what ethical landlords could do in these uncertain times. The government may have halted evictions but individual landlords can do a lot in advance of help from authorities, and in addition to it.

Flexibility is the key to maintaining a good relationship between tenant and landlord. Rental stakeholders made four suggestions.

  1. Landlords should talk direct to tenants or at least be included in the conversation.
  2. Compromise. Find what concessions the tenant and landlord can make - the landlord may have landlord insurance or can take a mortgage holiday. Tenants should aim to find concessions too.
  3. Use agents who reflect your values who will notify you if your tenant has problems.
  4. Share success stories so that other landlords know what options such as rent reductions or deferred rent, are available.

The global pandemic has created extraordinary times which are affecting everyone – tenants, landlords, property agents. Everyone is in the same boat so it pays to work together.

For more information about Professor Baker’s research read her article in the Conversation.

Tagged in tenancy, renting, landlord