Over the last few years, renting out your investment property or home through platforms like Stayz or Airbnb has become a popular way to earn extra income or have your home looked after while you’re away. Some property investors even bought units or homes specifically to use for short-term rental accommodation. This option seemed like a quicker and easier way to get on the property ladder and have guests pay off a mortgage faster. 

We know how that worked out over the pandemic. Inner-city unit prices crashed ‒ both rental prices and sale prices. Investors who relied on the high returns of short-term rentals were caught out and many had to sell or scrambled to find long-term tenants. Now new legislation changes that came into effect on 1 November mean that long-term rentals are looking like a much better option for homeowners in the Balmain Peninsula area. 

New host obligations; the STRA code of conduct

Hosts of short-term rental accommodation now have a range of obligations they must abide by when renting out their property. 

The new short-term rental accommodation laws require homeowners to register their property and pay a registration fee to the State Government. This registration applies to houses, units and terraces rented out on a short-term basis. Upon registration, homeowners will be provided with an identification number that they will need to use in all advertising. Without this number, online booking providers like AirBnB are unable to advertise a property for short-term rent. 

Hosts must register their properties on the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment’s Short Term Rental Accommodation (STRA) register and pay the relevant fees before the property can be advertised legally for short-term rental. 

On top of this, hosts have other obligations, including that they must:

  • Hold insurance that is valid for the occupancy period and which covers liability for third-party injuries and death on the premises.
  • Be contactable between 8am and 5pm every day of the week to manage guests, complaints and any other issues related to the property. 
  • Be contactable for emergencies outside of 8am to 5pm every day. 
  • Provide information to guests that includes contacts for an emergency electrician and plumber or other emergency services, a copy of the Code of Conduct, and any by-laws that apply to the building if it’s a strata unit. 
  • Advise the neighbours, and owners corporation if in strata scheme that the property is being used for short-term rental, and provide contact details of the host. 
  • Take reasonable steps in a timely manner regarding any potential breaches or issues. 

Changes to short-term accommodation laws have prompted many property owners to consider whether it really is worth renting their homes for short periods or whether long-term leases are a better, easier option. 

Why choose a long-term lease?

There are plenty of reasons why long-term leases pay off for property owners. The top reason is, of course, that long-term leases offer certainty and a steady income (and lenders love to see this). Also, long-term leases pay off for owners because there is no churn of people coming and going. This means less wear and tear on your home and effects, and less cost in replacing and repairing items. Better still, you can engage a good property manager to take care of your tenants and investment property in a way that’s cost-effective, and protects your interests.

Can we help with your Inner West property?

Whether you’re ready to sell or need help to rent your investment property, we have the experience and local knowledge to make your property journey easier. 

We can find the right tenants for your home and ensure you’re getting the optimum rental income. Take a moment to find out why you should consider using our experienced property management team for your Inner West investment property. 

Looking for help selling your home or renting your investment property? Our team at Belle Property Balmain support homeowners across Balmain, Balmain East, Birchgrove, Rozelle and Lilyfield. Feel free to get in touch for a no-obligation discussion or property appraisal.

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