Disturbing feature in $310 Sydney rental: 'No thanks'

The unusual element to this Sydney rental has people debating whether they'd live there.

A bizarre element to a Sydney rental has attracted both laughs and concerns — but is it legal?

The "newly renovated" studio at Peakhurst in Sydney's south, suited for one person, is only a "two-minute drive to [the] shopping centre" and "20 minutes from [the] CBD". The only catch being that the glass bathroom door appears to be completely see-through.

Yahoo News Australia understands there is no 'smart glass' technology where the glass door becomes opaque when locked.

The ad for the $310 studio, inclusive of bills and wi-fi, makes no secret of the fact. The renter, who is hoping to transfer the lease, posts photos of the space, showing the modern bathroom from the outside, right next to the kitchen that includes a cooktop, range hood and washing machine.

A photo of a bathroom in a Sydney rental with a see-through glass door. Another photo from a different angle, showing the kitchen/ laundry right next to the bathroom.
A Sydney rental has garnered lots of commentary for its transparent glass bathroom door. Source: Facebook

Rental attracts mixed responses

After coming across the ad, several people were concerned by the bathroom's lack of privacy.

"With the way the market is currently, what if you have to live here with a friend or partner?! What about guests too??? Hopefully if that’s the case they’d let them put up a curtain," she said on the Don't Rent Me Facebook group.

The response was quite divided, with some not taking issue with the set-up and instead finding it rather convenient. "I’d live there, I don’t have guests over and my 2 kids follow me to the loo to have conversations with me and watch me while I pee and poop anyways! I have 0 privacy," one person said.

A photo of the Peakhurst studio which has garnered lots of commentary for its transparent glass bathroom door.
A wider shot of the Peakhurst studio. Source: Facebook

"If I was looking for just myself, at $310 I would definitely consider this place. I think it’s quite cute. Would be fine for 1 person or a couple," another said. "Look nice, clean and simple," a third person said.

"Nothing handier than being able to keep an eye on dinner while taking a dump," another joked.

Another respondent said they were not happy with the set-up and had seen something similar before. "Unfortunately I have seen a lot of these in studios/ apartments. I have even been in one (with frosted glass though). It’s a no thanks for me," the person commented. "That is weird as s**t," another said.

But is it legal?

In NSW, a residential premises is considered fit for habitation only if it has bathroom facilities that allow privacy for the user.

However what constitutes as privacy isn't exactly specified, and whether see-through glass doors are allowed isn't concrete, according to Jemima Mowbray, the Policy and Advocacy Manager at Tenants' Union NSW.

"Depending on exactly where in the house the bathroom is located, it doesn't seem that a glass bathroom door without frosting, any curtains or further privacy features (screen etc) would meet this standard," she told Yahoo News Australia. But then again, there "may be some niche customers," who wouldn't mind rentals like this.

More rentals advertised that 'haven't factored in functionality'

Ms Mowbray said "smaller' and "more contained" properties are being put forward in a bid to tackle "housing affordability". Developer tactics like glass doors "increase the value by making the rental look bigger" but don't "factor in functionality". "Landlords may forget that it's not a short-stay, it's someone’s home," she said.

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