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Caution: storms, floods and cyclones ahead!

Storm season is already well underway in Queensland after wild weather lashed parts of south-east Queensland in October.

In the aftermath of extreme weather events, tenants and property managers/owners are urged to make contact early and discuss arrangements for cleaning up and making repairs.

Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) Chief Executive Officer Jennifer Morgan said maintaining open communication is key to ensuring the best outcome for everyone after events like storms, cyclones and flooding.

“Property managers/owners have a legal responsibility to make sure the rental property is safe and fit to live in,” Ms Morgan said.

“They are responsible for the repairs and maintenance necessary to bring the property back to a livable condition, which should also comply with health and safety laws.”

Obligations for repairs and maintenance apply to building structures, fences, large trees, pools and any other inclusions.

Ms Morgan noted tenants also have responsibilities following adverse weather events.

“Tenants should alert the property managers/owners of any repairs or maintenance needed to minimise damage to the property, and where damage is caused by severe weather events, tenants should remove and clean up their own possessions,” she said.

Although tenants are responsible for insuring their own possessions, property managers/owners may need to make insurance claims for damage to the property after adverse weather events. Keeping lines of communication open with the tenant during this time of recovery and informing them each step of the way is good practice.

Everyone involved in a tenancy should plan ahead for storm season. The RTA has a variety of information to help tenants and property managers/owners manage severe weather events, including a webinar on preparing for storm season and a natural disasters fact sheet.

Find out more about requirements for the condition of a rental property and repairs in a rental property by phoning the RTA direct on 1300 366 311.