Separation or Divorce
Did you know that there are over 40,000 divorces in Australia every year?
Any marriage or couple break up can be a difficult time for everyone involved. This can be even more problematic when there are contracts/leases involved.
One of the most common questions asked to property managers is what happens during a break up. Who stays, who goes, how do you split the bond and many other valid questions. But there are two main things you need to keep in mind.
- Any change of the tenancy agreement must be put in writing and proposed to the landlord.
- You and your partner/roommate entered into an agreement to pay rent for the property for a certain amount of time.
The first thing that needs to be considered is if you are both leaving or one of you is staying at the property.
Remember that the owner approved 2 tenants at the start of the lease. So effectively, you are changing the terms of the lease. If one of you decide to stay, then the owner must agree to this.
For this change of tenancy, both tenants must agree in writing and sign a change of bond form as well. The person staying at the property will need to pay out the partners half of the bond to the person leaving.
It is important to remember that if there are any damages to the property at this stage, then your property manager should be advised as this could affect the bond refund at the end of the tenancy.
If both of you choose to end the tenancy agreement or the owner does not allow 1 person to stay in the property, then this is treated like any standard break lease – which will incur fees and charges (split between each person).
If the separation or divorce is not amicable and you are struggling to come to an agreement, there are agencies that can help mediate a solution that suits everyone. As always, it is best to keep your property manager in the loop at all times.
Relationships Australia – PH 1300 364 277 is one organisation that can help when mediation is required.
However, if there are any issues with domestic violence, new QLD laws are now in place. Please speak with your property manager Simone or Rebecca about this.