What obligations do I have to current tenants?


Question: I’m 39 years old and own a four-bedroom property on Oxford Street, Sydney, that I wish to sell. The property is currently leased for less than its market value as a share house, though the lease is a fixed-term agreement with one tenant. I am concerned that the low rent I am currently charging will affect the price I may get for the property, but am not sure whether I can evict the current tenants or increase their monthly rent to bring the property back up to value. What legal obligations do I have to the current tenants if I put the house on the market?

Answer: You have not told us whether your tenants are on an expired or current lease. If the lease has expired, you are able to either notify them of a rental increase or give them 60 days’ notice to vacate the property and then you can either sell the property with vacant possession or find new tenants at a higher rental and sell the property subject to the new tenancy.

You should discuss the matter with the selling agent you propose using to ascertain whether the particular property you are selling is likely to be more attractive to prospective purchasers if sold vacant or with tenants.

If the tenants are on a current and unexpired lease, you are not able to evict the tenants or increase the rental without the agreement of the tenants.

George Vlahakis  
George Vlahakis is a solicitor with Kydon Segal Lawyers

If you have a question for our experts, email it to: editor@yipmag.com.au

Disclaimer: No magazine article can consider your individual circumstances or personal needs in relation to your sale or purchase transaction. You should seek advice for your particular circumstances before entering into any transaction.

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