Date posted: 17/04/2020 3 min read

Queensland announces commercial retail and residential tenant protections

Land tax relief, eviction freezes and rental support are part of measures to protect businesses and jobs.

In Brief

  • Commercial and retail tenants may be eligible for land tax relief and deferrals
  • Queensland Government to freeze rent arrears evictions for residential tenants

The Queensland Government has announced eviction protections for commercial, retail and residential tenants and land tax relief for commercial and retail property owners that provide rent relief to tenants.

Support for commercial and retail tenants

There will be a three-month rebate of land tax for 2019-20, followed by a three-month deferral of land tax for 2020-21 for property owners who provide rent relief for tenants negatively affected by COVID-19.

A landowner can apply for land tax relief if they meet certain criteria, including:

  • the landowner rents all or part of a property to a tenant/s or all or part of a property is currently available for lease
  • at least one tenant's ability to pay their normal rent or the landowner’s ability to secure a tenant is affected by the COVID-19 pandemic
  • the landowner provides rent relief to an affected tenant/s commensurate with the amount of the land tax rebate or if the property is unable to be leased, the landowner requires land tax relief to meet financial obligations (such as debt repayments)
  • the landowner complies with new leasing requirements, even if the relevant lease is not regulated.

"By granting this relief, landlords will have a greater capacity to support tenants that have been adversely affected COVID-19, taking pressure off their cash flow at this critical time," said Chris Mountford, Property Council Queensland Executive Director.

"We know the circumstances that landlords and tenants are finding themselves in vary greatly. A 'one size fits all' approach to these challenges simply does not work."

Support for residential tenants and owners

The Queensland Government will implement the National Cabinet's decision to freeze evictions due to rent arrears for tenants impacted by COVID-19.

Tenants and landlords are encouraged to find solutions that suit their situations, but there will be compulsory conciliation for COVID-19 through the Residential Tenancies Authority for those that cannot reach an agreement.

Landlords must offer an extension to a lease for at least a further six months for tenants negatively impacted by COVID-19. Tenants will still be required to demonstrate respect by abiding by their tenancy agreements and if the tenant decides to end their lease early, landlords should allow their tenants to do so.

Queensland tenants experiencing hardship and waiting for other financial support or are unable to access support may be eligible for rental grants of up to four weeks rent (or a maximum of A$2000) under the Queensland Government's failsafe measures to support residential tenants.

QLD Government COVID-19 land tax relief

For further information on eligibility and how to apply for Qld’s COVID-19 land tax relief.

Read More

QLD Government Residential Rental Hub

For further information and resources between property owners and renters.

Read More

QLD Government media statements

Palaszczuk Government moves to protect retail and commercial tenants Special COVID-19 Protections for residential tenants and owners.

Read the media statement

Rent relief policy – sharing the burden between landlords and business during COVID-19

National Cabinet’s decision to freeze evictions

Read more on the decision