Form 18a residential tenancy agreement fast facts
Can a minor sign a residential tenancy agreement?
Yes, under Section 28 of the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008, a minor can enter into a tenancy agreement as tenants do not have to be 18 years of age.
Property managers need to exercise caution during the tenancy selection process, as they should not decline a person the opportunity to apply for a property simply because they are not 18 years of age.
However, property managers do need to exercise the same due diligence they would in any tenancy selection procedure and assess the selection criteria. The same questions apply – “can the applicant provide evidence they have the ability to pay the rent?” or “can the applicant provide evidence they can meet the tenancy obligations?”
In some instances, applicants may be unable to satisfy the criteria on their own, so they apply with other tenants who have a higher capacity to meet the criteria.
This means that all the tenants are jointly and severally liable, which provides broader protection to property owners in the event the tenants fail to meet their obligations under the agreement.
To protect the owner, the other party must be listed as a co-tenant on the agreement and not as a guarantor.
Can a company enter into a residential tenancy agreement?
Under the Corporations Act (Section 124), a company is considered a legal entity and can enter into a contract.
The property manager still needs to undertake the same due diligence they would in any tenancy selection process.
- complete an ASIC search for registration and company directors;
- confirm the company can pay the rent with their history of earnings via BAS, tax returns or an accountant letter; and
- check trade account references.
To give the owner broader protection, a director should also apply and meet the same tenancy selection criteria. Directors should also be listed as co-tenants, alongside their company.
Follow this link to a QCAT Appeal order, which provides a good overview on what to consider when a tenant is a company or read this article for a more in-depth look at companies entering into residential tenancy agreements..
QCAT APPEAL Extract
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Important disclaimer: This article is provided for general information only, and the author is not engaged to render professional advice or services through this article. Readers should satisfy themselves as to the correctness, relevance, and applicability of any of the above content, and should not act on any of it in respect of any specific problem or generally without first obtaining their own independent professional legal advice.