Landlords anticipate huge loss with rent freeze laws
LANDLORDS could be forced to tighten their belts as new laws are implemented to protect tenants from eviciton if they find themselves unemployed from coronavirus.
Owner of several rental properties in Warwick Jayne Shelley said she expects losses stretching into the thousands of dollars should her tenants not be able to pay rent.
But despite the anxiety that comes with unpaid rent, Mrs Shelley said she wouldn’t want to evict anyone during the pandemic.
“I hope it won’t come to that as right now, all my tenants are on welfare or employed at present,” she said.
“But at the end of the day no one wants to kick out their good tenants, so we’ll be approaching it with as much compassion as we can.”
Mrs Shelley said she hopes new laws will come into place so landlords aren’t left hurting from the six month rent freeze.
“If that happened, we would freeze our home loan but ideally we wouldn’t want to do that as we’d have to pay $20,000 in interest back later,” she said.
“In an ideal world, the banks would freeze our interest if we have to freeze tenant’s loans but we’ll see what happens.”
Helen Harm from Helen Harm Real Estate said she believes tenants may be using COVID-19 as an excuse to avoid rent payments.
“I have had people try that but I honestly think it’s because they can’t manage their finances correctly,” she said.
“The ones who are actually facing that reality come to me or the landlords and we work it out.”
Mrs Shelley said that is also a concern for herself.
“We have a tenant who is likely to use that as an excuse but I think that’s because she’s had a hard time financially and a break from rent could help her get back on her feet which I can understand,” she said.
“I think if we take care of them and we can at this time, then they’ll take care of us because good tenants are hard to come by.
“We’ll just have to play it by ear because these things change daily.”