Ultimately renting a property
is flexible. Tenants are not burdened with a home loan that takes years to repay, and they avoid repair responsibilities aside from any damage caused by neglect.
Therefore dependent on the terms of the tenancy agreement, a tenant can move out and try living in a new neighbourhood, a different building or upsize and downsize as they please. However, staying put has its perks too.
Tenants are lucrative as they pay off a landlord’s home loan or provide a regular income stream should this have been repaid. Landlords do not want to leave their property empty as it increases their costs plus it is often better for someone to be in residence to keep it ticking over as services like air conditioning and water prefer to be operational.
Most landlords realise the virtue of having a good tenant. A good tenant is not only someone who pays their rent in a timely fashion, but they also keep on top of home maintenance advising when something requires fixing before it escalates into a bigger problem. They also have minimal requests for alterations that cut into profits.
Tenants can use this as leverage against their landlord. Naturally, they should avoid annoying them, which encourages landlords to secure a new tenant, but it is cheaper for both parties to renew a tenancy rather than the tenant moving out.
Tenants avoid moving-related costs such as cleaning and the cost of moving belongings and avoid having to ensure they have sufficient funds in place for a deposit for the next property. Landlords can enjoy continuous rent without any voids should a tenant stay, no maintenance costs to get a property ready for a new tenant as well as eradicating real estate agent
fees to find a new tenant. Renewing a tenancy is a win-win for both parties.
Renewing a tenancy does not automatically mean that the rent will go up. Market conditions and demand for property dictate rent increases and renegotiating discussions should reflect these. Some landlords might want to see a rent increase, but this is unrealistic if the economy is performing poorly.
Tenants should be prepared that this question might arise when renewing a tenancy and have a solid defence why they feel it is not valid. Likewise, a landlord should provide reasonable reasons for a rent increase, for example, the rent is significantly lower than comparable units in the building or if a rent increase reflects additional tenant demands such as new appliances or remedial works such as painting or a new bathroom. Like any relationship communication is key, and both parties should work together to reach a mutually happy agreement.
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