While tenants and landlords have been in the spotlight recently, as potentially struggling due to the recent extension of the Residential Tenancies (COVID-19 Response) Act until 28 March 2021, you may not be aware that sellers and buyers may also be impacted. Sellers When selling a property which is currently occupied with tenants, you will need to make sure your agent is well aware of this. During the inspection and negotiation process, the agent will explain to potential buyers there are tenants in the property and if a fixed term lease is in place, the tenants have the right to remain in the property until the end of the tenancy. If the fixed term tenancy ends before the end of the emergency period, the tenancy will become periodic and 30-days' notice can then be given to vacate. The settlement date may need to be adjusted. However, if the tenancy is already periodic, the owner can issue a 30-day notice to vacate the property, only if vacant possession is a condition of the sale. While this can make it difficult for someone who is needing to move in straight away, it can make the ideal situation for an investor as they don’t need to search for a tenant to move into the property. Buyers If you are taking the plunge and buying your next home and have found the ideal property, it is important that you find out if it is currently leased out or not, as this can impact on when you are able to move into the property. Due to the extension of the emergency tenancy laws, you may have to wait at least until 28 March 2021 until you can move into your property. So, if your heart is set on a property with a tenant, make sure you confirm the details with the selling agent and have other living arrangements lined up. Current landlords This termination issue also impacts landlords that are wanting to move back into their investment property. While some might associate an investor with having multiple living arrangements and the ability to afford an investment property, this is not the case for most. In many situations, landlords have relocated back to Western Australia from the east coast or overseas and desire to move back into their home which they leased out while living elsewhere temporarily. Many of these people were waiting until the emergency period to end on 28 September 2021, but now are unable to move until after 28 march 2021. With low rental stock available, many are finding it hard to find a rental property to live in for a short amount of time, therefore they have resorted to spending a larger than normal amount of money to stay in AirBnB’s or hotel accommodation. If you take this added cost into account with the potential reduced rent coming in from their tenants, many are struggling financially to stay afloat. What can you do? Have your voice heard by joining REIWA’s campaign: A fair go for landlords. REIWA understands that there are quite a few tenants and landlords out there who are struggling with the extension, which is why we are calling on everyone to tell us their story. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your information on how you are experiencing the current rental situation.