Information for Private Rental Tenants
CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) UPDATE: Information for private rental tenants
The safety and wellbeing of our community are our top priority and our goal is to continue to deliver services.
Unison is carefully monitoring developments related to the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease) pandemic to understand the impacts on our community, services and activities. Based on guidance from the Australian and State Governments and health authorities, we are making some changes to the way we work to protect you, our staff and the community.
Please read the important updates for you as a tenant below.
→ Be cautious about covid-19 scams
DHHS has reported that scammers are pretending to be Government agencies providing Covid-19 information via text and emails. Scams include false notifications of close contacts to confirmed coronavirus cases which contain malicious links and attachments designed to steal personal and financial information when they are opened.
Please be cautious and remain alert to scams. Government agencies will not ask you to click an email link or open an attachment. The COVIDSafe app will not notify any person directly that they are a confirmed case or the contact of one - only a DHHS public officer would.
If you suspect that you have been a target of a scam or are unsure, go to https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/report-a-scam
→ Changes to our service delivery
To reduce the health risks to everyone, we have made the decision to close our office until further notice. While our office may be closed, our Property Management team is working remotely and is still available to assist.
→ Repairs and maintenance
The process to report a repair or maintenance issue remains the same:
As this unprecedented situation continues to progress, response times from our teams may be a bit slower than usual, but be assured that we will respond as soon as possible. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
→ What to do if there is a change in your financial circumstances?
We are committed to supporting you in your tenancy. The impact of COVID-19 has been felt everywhere. We understand that some tenants may have reduced hours of work and that some may have lost employment. If this is impacting you, please contact your Property Manager as soon as possible so that we can assist you to find a solution.
Your Property Manager will continue to collect and monitor rent payments closely on behalf of your landlord. We strongly encourage you to contact your Place Manager if you are experiencing difficulty with your rent payments.
The Victorian Government has recently announced rent relief grants for Victorians experiencing rental hardship as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. Please visit the following links to find out more:
→ What we ask of you
Please let us know as soon as possible if you or anyone in your household is in self-isolation, is feeling unwell, or has been in contact with anyone who tested positive or is in the process of being tested for the virus. This will help ensure we take the appropriate measures if we need to send out contractors to your home.
→ Keep informed of the latest update
We encourage you to look after yourself, your family and the community. Please follow the community health advice and keep informed of the latest update by visiting dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus or calling the Coronavirus Helpline on 1800 675 398 (free call, 24/7).
Information is also available in other languages: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/translated-resources-coronavirus-disease-covid-19 and https://www.sbs.com.au/language/coronavirus
→ I am feeling unwell, what should I do?
If you have a fever, cough, or trouble breathing, call your GP or the Coronavirus Helpline on 1800 675 398.
→ If you can stay home, you must stay home
As part of the Stage 3 Restrictions, the Victorian Government is directing everyone to stay at home, restricting sporting, cultural, recreational and commercial activities to help limit the spread of coronavirus.
Basically, you are asked to stay home unless you are: shopping for essentials, receiving medical care, exercising, travelling to work or education, or visiting family or friends. Note that this is compulsory and you may be fined if you are leaving your home for reasons outside the ones stating by government
Note that support is available if you are unable to go out to shop for essentials or receive medical care. Contact your Property Manager to find out more.
→ Gatherings restricted
The number of people who can gather continues to be restricted.
People who live in long-term housing can now have up to five visitors (family and friends) in their home. This is in addition to members of the immediate household but should remain an exception.
Tenants should continue to avoid large gatherings in common areas of buildings, like laundry facilities, lifts etc. If there are ten people, already present, or if physical distancing cannot be maintained, please come back later.
For people living in rooming houses, the rules around no visitors continue to be in place.
→ Follow the health advice to stop the spread
All residents, clients and staff should follow the government directions as follows:
Your Privacy Rights
Unison is a not-for-profit organisation. Our members are important stakeholders with particular rights. Members appoint board directors and are able to vote at company general meetings. Membership is free. The Unison member factsheet provides more information.
To apply for membership complete the Unison membership form. If you would like further information call in to your nearest Unison office or contact Nina on (03) 9349 0257.
More information for tenants
Tenant Information- Victoria
- EPA (Environment Protection Authority Victoria) – Annoyed by noise booklet
- Residential Tenancies Renting Rights and Responsibilities
- Consumer Affairs https://www.consumer.vic.gov.au
- Tenants Victoria https://www.tenantsvic.org.au
- VCAT https://www.vcat.vic.gov.au
Tenant Information- South Australia
- Civil and Administrative Tribunal (SACAT) http://www.sacat.sa.gov.au/
- Consumer and Business Services (CBS) http://www.cbs.sa.gov.au/
- Tenants Information and Advocacy Services http://www.syc.net.au/tias/how-to-contact-tias/
- Shelter SA http://www.sheltersa.asn.au/get-involved/