Our latest enews. Enjoy.

Change to tenancy laws. Can landlords protest?

Guys, I have the BEST landlady. She lets me keep a cat; approves all maintenance requests in a jiffy; turns a blind eye to my unsanctioned use of 3M hooks…

My real estate agent says she is the best landlord on his books.

Amendments to the Victorian Residential Tenancies Act introduced to parliament this week mean we can’t call her my landlord anymore. She is my “residential rental provider” and I am her “renter.”

Under the new amendments, life won’t change for my “residential rental provider.” She already exceeds the minimum standards, and allows me to make modifications.

REIV call these changes a ‘nanny state’ disaster:

“The so-called ‘Rent Fair’ legislation, which will be introduced into the Victorian Parliament this week, has the potential to deplete Victoria’s rental housing stock, which is worth $519.2 billion, as landlords pull their supply from the market. “

Interesting. Where exactly will landlords take their supply?

Perhaps they’ll leave their properties vacant and run afoul of the vacancy tax?

Perhaps they’ll try AirBnB and run the gauntlet of Spring Carnival parties and cranky body corporates? Could a supply influx crash the market for hotel rooms?

Perhaps we’ll see unbridled demolitions as investors attempt to dodge the vacancy tax and minimise their land tax liabilities?

No. Supply will not leave the market. Dodgy landlords will leave the market.

They will either sell to landlords who are prepared to meet the new standards. Or they will sell to the hoard of long-term renters currently locked out of homeownership.

That’s good news for decent landlords, good news for would be owner-occupiers, and good news for tenants.

Will the Victorian land register “commercialisation” go ahead?

Word on the street is that the Victorian government are re-calibrating their position  on privatisation.

In a leaked copy of his State-of-the-State address to the Committee for Economic Development of Australia, Premier Andrews was reported (paywall) to have said privatisations had gone too far.

“You don’t have to be an economist to realise that something is broken. We were promised that a privatised electricity market would lower prices. Wrong. Privatisation has not worked. It’s only made things harder for families.”

Will Andrew’s new attitude save the land titles register?

The report from the Parliamentary inquiry is now available.

Among it’s primary recommendations:

That the Government publish detailed reasons for the commercialisation, including appropriate content from the scoping study for the proposed commercialisation, and details of other options considered.

Beyond motherhood statements about “private sector innovation,” not one of the government departments had a concrete rationale for the sell-off. 

In her minority report (from page 59), Greens MLC Samantha Ratnam said: 

The evidence overwhelming cited concerns with the purpose and process of the proposed privatisation of key functions of the land titles service in Victoria but did not provide compelling evidence about the need or justification for the proposed lease arrangements.

In contrast, serious concerns were raised by key organisations about the outcome of commercialising what is essentially a monopoly service.

Now is the time to write to your MP.

Henry George Dinner – Only 10 days away!

Tuesday September 4th
Presenter: Dr Cameron Murray
Venue: Brunswick Mess Hall, 400 Sydney Rd

Join us at the Brunswick Mess Hall for the 127th Annual Henry George Commemorative Dinner and address.


This year, Dr. Cameron Murray, economist and co-author of “The Game of Mates” is dropping the gauntlet.


After 10+ years of soothing statements and band-aids, our housing system remains broken.


What are we to make of the last decade of housing policy?


Is affordable housing really such an intractable problem? Or are we being played?


Dress: Smart casual. Dinner served from 6.45pm.


Tickets are limited. $40 members, $60 non-members.


See you there,