Housing & Essentials

For many individuals, families and businesses their ability to continue to pay their rent is of great concern during this pandemic.

The Victorian Government has introduced a 6 month moratorium for renters which is due to end on the 29th September 2020. This moratorium seeks to  provide support to both tenants and landlords by making reforms to both residential and commercial tenancy laws.

What does this mean for me?

  • There will be a temporary ban on evictions for 6 months (period starting 29th March 2020 until September 29th 2020). This means that tenants cannot be evicted for being unable to make monthly payments due to loss of income. Nonetheless, it is best to reach an agreement with both your real estate agent and landlord. Please note that a tenant can still be requested to vacate within 30 days if the landlord wishes to sell the property, if the tenant has not abided by other agreements set out in their lease, or if there is substantial damage to the property caused by the tenant.
  • No rent increases for six months
  • Land tax reductions to landlords who provide rent relief to their tenants
  • Fast tracked dispute resolution services for landlords and tenants who cannot come to an agreement
  • Rental assistance fund eligible to those renters facing financial hardship due to Covid-19 who have less than $5000 savings, have registered their revised agreement with Consumer Affairs Victoria or have gone through mediation and paying 30% of their income in rent

Changes to Mortgage and Personal Loans

 Most banks are offering a 6 month pause on repayments for home and personal loans. However, do note that interest on these loans will still accrue over time and the loan repayment period may need to be extended to cater for this. Repayments restarting will be mutually agreed upon by the individual and their broker.

For further information on tenancy please visit:

https://www.tenantsvic.org.au/advice/coronavirus-covid-19/

https://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/resources-and-tools/advice-in-a-disaster/coronavirus-covid19-and-your-rights

If during this time, you do lose your accommodation and find yourself homeless, there are still services operating that provide 24/7 hour support. Some of these services are listed below:

  • Launch Housing’s mobile outreach teams, crisis centres and other services continue to operate and provide support to people experiencing homelessness
  • Vincent Care – provides support to people experiencing homelessness, including supporting those who are experiencing domestic violence. Services through Vincent Care continue to be operational during Covid-19
  • Wayss homeless support services provides assistance to those in the Greater Dandenong, Casey, Cardinia, Mornington and Frankston areas.
  • Frontyard Youth Services is a specialist service for young people 12-24yrs to address homelessness as well as any other physical, emotional and social needs.

 

Utility Relief

Keeping a roof over our heads is one concern, but staying on top of all the other expenses that come with living is another, many of which relate to utilities.  Most utility services are sympathetic to the financial difficulties facing many Australian’s and have stated that they will not disconnect services to those customers who have contacted them.

To find out what your energy service is offering please click on the links below:

 

Essentials (Food)

For those more vulnerable members of the community who are not able to leave home to do the shopping, many of the major food retailers have put together a range of boxes that can be delivered to your door.  Furthermore if you are a NDIS participant many of these retailers will also consider you a priority, and have your food delivered before the general community.

https://www.ndis.gov.au/coronavirus/priority-home-delivery-services

If you require material aid then organisations such as Vinnies and the Salvation Army are still operating and providing support to those in need.

Meals on Wheels is still delivering meals to their customers but with some added safety measures to ensure the health and wellbeing of the customers and also their volunteers.  If you are currently receiving your meals through this service and are either showing flu like symptoms or are unable to collect your meals from the front door you need to let them know.

 

Other Helpful Information

Financial Health & Community Supports