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Greens Negotiate with Government to Secure Breakthrough on Renters’ Rights

1 November 2023

The Greens have reached an agreement with the State Government to reform the Residential Tenancies Act, including ending no cause evictions, making it easier to rent with pets, and requiring landlords to provide tenants with 60 days’ notice to vacate a property if their lease is not renewed. The Greens also secured funding for a new independent advocacy service for renters in South Australia.

“The Greens have been leading the charge for reforming a rental system that is skewed in favour of landlords. Scrapping no-cause evictions, making it easier to rent with pets, and strengthening protections for renters have been key long-term priorities for the Greens and community groups. We welcome the Government finally taking action to deliver these long-overdue changes. This is a real breakthrough for renters’ rights in SA.”

“One of the biggest challenges that renters face in our system is the Damocles Sword of eviction hanging over their head if they attempt to stand up for their rights. Banning no cause evictions and establishing an independent advocacy service will help remedy that.”

“While we could not secure an agreement from the Government to implement rent capping in South Australia, these are important measures that will bring SA into line with other states and offer long-overdue protection for renters.”

“The Greens will continue to advocate for action on soaring rent prices and to cap rent increases in line with inflation.”

In July 2022, Mr Simms introduced a Private Members Bill to cap rent increases in line with CPI and restrict them to once in a 24-month period. The bill was defeated earlier this year, with all other parties voting in opposition to the plan. In August, Mr Simms tried again to reform the Residential Tenancies Act to give the Minister the power to intervene on rent prices but again couldn’t win the support of any other parties.

The bill to amend the Residential Tenancies Act includes, amongst other things:

  • Ending no-cause evictions by introducing prescribed grounds to terminate or not renew a tenancy;
  • Extending the notice period to end a tenancy from 28 days to 60 days;
  • Allowing tenants to have pets in rental homes with reasonable conditions;
  • Ensuring rental properties comply with minimum housing standards;
  • Making it easier for victims of domestic violence to break a lease;
  • Enhancing protections for tenants’ information; and
  • Establishing a new independent tenant’s advocacy service that will stand up for tenant’s rights and represent the interests of tenants (including supporting them at tribunal hearings).