MEDIA RELEASE: Renters in NSW need a rent freeze while reforms are being considered

The Greens welcome indications that the NSW Labor Government will consider action on excessive rent increases, but a consultation paper won’t pay the rent. Renters need a freeze on rent increases while this longer-term reform is implemented.

Commenting on the NSW Labor Government’s rental reform consultation paper released today, Jenny Leong Member for Newtown and Greens NSW Spokesperson for Renters’ Rights and Housing said:

“The Greens welcome that the NSW Labor Government is coming to the table with reforms to make renting more affordable and secure - reforms that the Greens have been pushing on for years. 

“The Greens and renters are ready to fight the powerful real estate and developer lobby that will no doubt be ready to stop reforms from undermining their profits. 

“Ending unfair, no grounds evictions and allowing pets in rentals are long-overdue reforms that would give renters desperately needed security.

“But we need to ensure that no-grounds evictions are ended for all renters on all leases - including renters at the end of a fixed term lease.  

“Any action on excessive rent increases need to include longer-term rent controls to ensure we are bringing down the record-high rent costs and actually making renting affordable.  

“Dealing with rent increases isn’t a data or information sharing exercise - renters know when their rent increase is excessive, what they need is clear limits on what a rent increase can be.

“The Greens want to make unlimited rent increases illegal, establish rent caps, and put hard limits on the amount and frequency of rent increases.

“But a consultation paper won’t pay the rent and renters are in crisis right now. We need to freeze rent increases for as long as these reforms take to be considered.

“The Greens Emergency Rent Freeze Bill is before NSW Parliament right now - we could have this in place within the month if the NSW Labor Government backed it in.

“Across the country the Greens are standing with renters and pushing state and federal governments to go further and faster on rental reform. 

“With rent caps now being seriously considered in NSW, a rent freeze not ruled out in Victoria yesterday, and renter’s rights pushed onto the national cabinet agenda - it’s clear a rent freeze is possible. ”

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