NT postpones remote rental reforms

·1-min read

The Northern Territory government has postponed the rollout of rental reforms in Indigenous communities, town camps and community living areas.

The Remote Rent Framework, which removes the need for bond and caps rent for public housing, was supposed to be implemented by September 5.

But it has been deferred to February 6 next year, with the government saying it needs more time to inform tenants about the changes.

"We want to ensure our tenants and stakeholders feel informed about the changes," Housing and Homelands Minister Selena Uibo said on Tuesday.

"Over the next five months we will revisit communities, town camps and community living areas to explain the new framework in more detail."

The NT government says the plan, which will see tenants paying a flat rate of $70 per bedroom per week, creates a fairer and simpler system for renters.

But it will also increase rents for about 65 per cent of households, the first in more than a decade for remote public housing tenants.

To offset that, the government will implement a safety net for tenants who are spending more than 25 per cent of their income on rent and likely to suffer from rental stress.

The NT government will also waive all legacy rental debts accrued in remote communities before December 11, 2021.

"Our new Remote Rent Framework will streamline the management of tenancies as we continue to build and upgrade more homes, and improve liveability right across the NT," Ms Uibo said.