With over 240,000 rental properties in Western Australia, a significant proportion of the state’s population will be impacted by any changes to the upcoming review of the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA), which is why REIWA will be advocating strongly for changes that benefit landlords, tenants and property managers. REIWA President Damian Collins said the review provides an opportunity for all parties to come together to ensure the legislation meets the needs of all parties involved. “According to the latest REIWA rental survey, more than 70 per cent of tenants said they were satisfied with their renting experience, which suggests the current rental system administered under the RTA is generally working well,” Mr Collins said. Focus of the review“The focus of the review should be to increase the number of choices available to both landlords and tenants within the current framework, with any increase to a tenant’s rights must come with an increase in their responsibilities, together with benefits to the landlords to ensure a fair and balanced outcome for all parties.” While REIWA is supportive of minor changes to the RTA to better protect tenants, it’s imperative that the rights of landlords are maintained in order to attract investment and ensure ongoing supply of private rental housing. Keep property investment attractive“Given that 96 per cent of all rental housing is provided by investors, a system that encourages investment to facilitate the supply of private rental housing and ongoing affordability for tenants is required,” Mr Collins said. “Therefore, it is essential that any changes to the RTA do not negatively impact landlords or their appetite to invest in residential housing.” Key policy pointsThe Institute believes that very few aspects of the current rental legislation require a complete overhaul, which is why during the review, REIWA will be focusing on seven key policy options: Maintain the right to choose between a fixed or periodic tenancy. Preserve a lessor’s rights to end a periodic tenancy without grounds, if necessary. Encourage pets in rental properties without limiting a landlord’s right to determine the suitability of the property to house pets. Ensure compliance with current housing standards without creating additional red tape. Protect both landlord’s and tenants’ interest by requiring consent before modification to a property. Ensure disputes are handled quickly, fairly, and efficiently in the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT). Maintain the current hardship provision for those seeking to break-lease. More informationREIWA supports regulatory proposals that improve economic and social outcomes to deliver maximum net benefits for Western Australians and looks forward to helping the RTA review achieve a result of a reinvigorated rental market. While this is a broad overview of what REIWA will be advocating for during the review, you can view REIWA’s full submission to see all the details or visit our advocacy page for more information.