Short-term rental bill passes Australian Parliament

Australia: The Owners Corporation and Other Acts Amendment Bill 2020 has passed through the Upper House of Victorian Parliament, ensuring the protection of short stay operations in the state. 

Developing from previous inquiries made by parliament into the short stay operations in the state, the legislation covers the operations of short stay accommodation businesses in Victoria, benefitting owners and the tourism industry in providing travellers with more choice of where to stay when they visit the state. It covers a broad range of reforms around the functioning of strata-titled buildings, in particular between Owners Corporation [OC] Managers and OC Committees.

ResortBrokers, one of Australia’s leading accommodation industry agencies, led the campaign to amend part of the original legislation. The original legislation proposed to restrict developers from entering into any management agreements for more than three years.

Without amendment, the legislation would have put an end to new short stay operations in residential apartment buildings in Victoria.

The company engaged with key ministers including the Victorian Treasurer, the Minister for Tourism and the Minister for Consumer Affairs to achieve the amendment to the bill. The amendment will effectively protect contracts that facilitate hotel and serviced apartment operations from the restrictions of Section 67B.

ResortBrokers director Alex Cook said: “This is a great result for the Victorian economy as it provides the security of tenure to short stay operators required to invest the significant amount of time and capital necessary to establish a successful and professional short stay operation. It also ensures tourists and travellers staying in Victoria have the option of staying in a wider range professionally-run hotels and service apartment buildings.”