Junction Tenants

Tenant Survey 2017
Tenant Information
Tenant Handbook
Maintenance
Tenant Support
Feedback



Access to premises

Under the Residential Tenancies Act 1995 tenants have the right to privacy and quiet enjoyment of the premises they are renting. 

To enter a property legally, permission (not more than once every 4 weeks) from the tenant/s is required or appropriate notice given.  It is a term of a residential tenancy agreement that the landlord may enter the premises if (and only if):-

(a) Emergency Access

entry is made in an emergency e.g. fire, flood, gas leak etc. wherein no notice need be given. 

(b) Routine Inspection Access

the landlord gives the tenant written notice stating the purpose and specifying the date and time of the proposed entry not less than seven days and not more than 14 days before entering the premises for the purpose of conducting a routine inspection. 

(c) Maintenance Access

entry is made for the purpose of carrying out necessary repairs or maintenance at a reasonable time of which the tenant has been given at least 48 hours written notice.

Under the Act, access to the premises is available for the following specific reasons:

 

Minimum notice to access the premises

Reason

Minimum notice

Having a general inspection

7 – but no more than 14 days. Tenant Services Officers can conduct a maximum of 12 general inspections in a 12 month period

Carrying out routine repairs

2 days = 48 hours

Carrying out urgent repairs

None

Showing the premises to prospective tenants

‘Reasonable’ notice. 

Taking possession of abandoned premises

None

Responding to an emergency

None

Following a tribunal order

As stated in the order

If the tenant agrees

At negotiated times

 

What is ‘reasonable’ is not defined in the Act.  Tenant Services Officers are encouraged to talk with the tenant and come to an agreement about what constitutes ‘reasonable’ notice and a ‘reasonable’ number of times.  The Act does specify certain times of the day and week which are not reasonable.  Unless the tenant agrees Junction Housing cannot have access to the premises on Sundays, on public holidays, before 8am or after 8pm.

If the Tenant Services Officer and Tenant cannot agree on what is ‘reasonable’ an application to the tribunal for an order should be sought.

Access to services

Junction Housing office hours are 9.00am to 4.00pm Monday to Friday (except public holidays).  Contact hours for tenants are 9.00am to 4.00pm Monday to Friday.

Junction Housing has an after hour’s maintenance call number for urgent maintenance requests only.  Maintenance calls received after hours which are not considered to be of an urgent nature will be followed up during business hours.

Assignment of Lease

In some circumstances, permission may be granted for an additional person to be added onto an existing tenancy agreement. For this to proceed, the following must occur:

  • Approval must be sought by Junction Housing and where appropriate the tenant(s) support worker.
  • All parties being the landlord, the original tenant and the prospective tenant must be in agreeance to the addition of the prospective tenant onto the tenancy agreement
  • The ingoing tenant must accept the condition of the property as is on the ingoing inspection report from the commencement of the original tenancy

 

Note:  Tenant(s) wishing to include an additional person on their lease must seek approval from Junction Housing prior to making any arrangements.

 

Changing needs of Tenants – rehousing and/or transfer

Junction Housing recognises that from time to time the housing needs of Tenants change.  Where possible Junction Housing will support the needs of the Tenants as long as there are valid grounds for a transfer and there is current availability within Junction Housing’s housing stock.   Tenant’s wishing to apply for a transfer must submit a ‘Property Transfer Request’ form and provide appropriate documentation from medical practitioners, support agencies and police etc to support their request for a transfer.  Junction Housing will consider the following factors as grounds to request a transfer:-

  • Domestic violence
  • Household formation changes – either increase or decrease
  • Overcrowding
  • Long term health issues
  • Disability
  • Access to support needs
  • Safety
  • Housing affordability.

Junction Housing will only consider a transfer request if there is another property available that better suits the tenant(s) and organisational needs - having regard to the limited number of vacancies that occur within Junction Housing’s housing stock.   Junction Housing manages a list of property transfer requests.  Tenants need to be aware that there is no guarantee that they will be transferred as they must meet the tenant criteria for a vacant property (e.g. income, occupancy standards, disability needs, defined target group etc).

Priority for decisions in transferring tenants will take into account changes in a tenant’s need for access to support, including those that are identified and raised by external support agencies working with the tenant.

 

Condition reports

Prior to the commencement of the tenancy Junction Housing staff undertake a property condition report and note the condition details on the ‘Ingoing Inspection sheet’.  The Tenant Services Officer also takes photographs of the condition of the property to support the information contained in the Ingoing Inspection sheet.

The tenant is provided with a copy of the Ingoing Inspection sheet at the tenancy sign up meeting.  The tenant is requested to fill in two copies of the Ingoing Inspection sheet – one to return to Junction Housing (reply paid envelope provided) and the other for the tenant to keep for their records.  Junction Housing keep a third copy on file and ask the tenant to sign the document as notification that they have received a copy of the RTT information brochure and that they have received a copy of the Ingoing Inspection sheet.

Should the tenant disagree with anything noted on the Ingoing Inspection sheet at the time of return, the Tenant Services Officer will discuss any anomaly with the tenant and where appropriate, action any maintenance required. 

 

Domestic violence or relationship breakdown

Junction Housing staff are sensitive to the needs of households experiencing relationship break-up and domestic violence.

Victims experiencing domestic violence will be given priority in transferring to another suitable property if one should become available and the tenant(s) meet the defined criteria for the target group.  Where a suitable property is not available, victims of domestic violence will be referred to alternative suitable housing providers for assistance.

Junction Housing will also assist the household to access appropriate supports to meet their needs.

Where a relationship breaks down, the household member leaving the property may apply for another Junction Housing property for which they are eligible.  When a vacancy occurs priority will be given to the registrant most in need of housing that meets the property/tenant fit.

 

How JH responds to racial and other forms of harassment

Racial and other forms of harassment will not be tolerated by Junction Housing.  Junction Housing Tenant Services Officers will follow the normal complaints process where acts of harassment occur.

If the tenant does not cease harassing other tenants or neighbours, Junction Housing may consider not renewing the tenant(s) lease or alternatively taking action through the Residential Tenancies Tribunal.

Should a Junction Housing tenant be harassed by another member of the community and the tenant(s) safety and welfare is at risk, Junction Housing may consider transferring the tenant to an alternative suitable property should one become available.

 

Rent

Junction Housing require tenants to pay their rent in full and when it is due.  Failure to do this may result in non-renewal of your lease or action through the Residential Tenancies Tribunal.

Rent can be paid in the following ways:-

  • Centrepay deduction – see your tenancy officer to initiate
  • Direct debit
  • At the Westpac Bank
  • Money order
  • Cash at Junction Housing

If you are having difficulty in paying your rent, please contact your Tenancy Officer to discuss the possibility of entering into a repayment arrangement.


Privacy and Confidentiality

Junction Housing complies with federal and state privacy legislation in the standards set for dealing with personal information and in accordance with JA practices and procedures outlined in the JA Policy and Assurance Manual.  All information collected is considered confidential whether obtained from the registrant, tenant or third party.  

The following principles will be followed in the collection and handling of personal and confidential information:-

  • Tenant interviews will be conducted in privacy
  • Personal and confidential information will be shared amongst Junction Housing where necessary to manage the tenancy and property
  • Personal and confidential information will not be provided to a third party or external agency unless informed consent is given by the tenant in writing
  • Personal and confidential information may be shared with a support worker or agency if it relates to the tenancy and informed consent has been given by the tenant in writing
  • Tenant and property files will be stored in a locked filing cabinet
  • Property keys will be stored in a locked key cabinet and will not be identifiable with either the Tenant or property details
  • Computers are password protected and logged off at the end of the day or when unattended
  • Papers containing Tenant or property information will be disposed of in a locked confidential waste bin
  • Tenants may access information in their files in accordance with Junction Housing policies and procedures
  • Reports provided to reporting or governing bodies will not provide identifiable information on the Tenant or property unless informed consent has been given by the tenant in writing
  • Where ‘informed consent’ to share personal and confidential information is unable to be given by the Tenant, the matter will be referred to the Operations Manager for consideration and where necessary formal advice

 

Tenant Rights

Junction Housing provides all tenants with clear and useful information regarding their rights and responsibilities as a tenant and how Junction Housing can assist them in sustaining their tenancy. 

Tenant rights are covered by the following policies and Legislation:-

  • Residential Tenancies ActousiHousing
  •  Junction Housing’s Policy and Assurance Manual
  • Junction Housing’s Constitution and By-Laws
  • Junction Housing’s brochure on client Rights
  • The tenant’s lease agreement
  • Guidelines set out in the Funding agreement with the Affordable Housing Innovations Unit
  • Guidelines set out in Community Housing Policies and procedures

 

Tenant Services Staff are required to uphold the above policies and Legislation at all times.

During the ‘ingoing tenancy’ interview the tenant will be advised of their rights and how they can make a complaint or appeal against decisions – tenants will receive a copy of Junction Housing’s  brochure on Client Rights as well as a copy of the Associations By-Laws which clearly sets out the Association’s complaints and Appeals process. 

Tenants are encouraged to bring their support worker (where applicable), Advocate or interpreter to the ingoing tenancy interview and to other meetings as required.

If a tenant is not happy with the outcome of a complaint, the Tenant Services Officer must remind the tenant of the Associations Appeals process.  Tenant Services Officers encourage the tenant to involve their support worker (where applicable), TIAS representative, Advocate or where required arrange for an interpreter to assist in any complaint process.


Junction Australia’s registered national community
housing provider is Junction and Women’s Housing Ltd.

Copyright © 2017 Junction Australia