From 18 December 2020, a mandatory Code of Conduct (“Code“) will come into force to regulate the short-term letting industry. This Code will impose a minimum standard of good behaviour and other obligations on booking platforms, hosts, letting agents and guests. These include, but are not limited to, the following:
- must not make noise that unreasonably disrupts neighbours of the property;
- must not cause damage to property, including any common property; and
- are responsible for the actions of their visitors and must ensure they comply with the behaviour standards set out in the Code.
- must hold insurance covering liability for third party injuries and death;
- must enable their neighbours to contact them about concerns relating to the property and be available between 8am and 5pm each day to discuss these concerns; and
- must ensure they do not rent the property out to a guest who is recorded on the exclusion register.
Booking platform and letting agents:
- must tell hosts and guests who use their services about the Code; and
- must not advertise or facilitate the offering of accommodation if the host or premises are recorded on the exclusion register.
The NSW Fair Trading Commissioner will be able to take disciplinary action through warnings, fines or recording a guest or host on a register to exclude them from the industry. There are also avenues for individuals to make a complaint to NSW Fair Trading if they believe the Code has been breached.
There are even further changes to the industry expected in mid-2021. This includes the establishment of a short-term rental accommodation premises register which all hosts will be required to register on.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.