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Sydney rental requirements



Hi all,

I just have a couple of quick questions on rental requirements in Sydney. From my understanding the rules can be quite strict.

- Are there any firm rules when it comes to income vs rental?

- I read somewhere that agents don't want places to be overcrowded and tend not to accept applications that will require bedroom sharing. We have two boys aged 4 and 6 that currently share a bedroom despite each having their own, so I was thinking of initially just renting a two bedroom place until we find our feet. Would this be allowed?

- We would like our son to start school as soon as possible after we arrive, but we require a 12 month lease and a utility bill before we can enrol him at the school. How do people get around this? We do have a family member that might be willing to view properties on our behalf if this would be allowed?


Edited by CTtoAus
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It is not that they are strict, how it works is that

They have an open day for people to check the place, lots of people show up to check, the good places, not expensive for the area, well looked after, close to trains, close to good schools will have more people

Multiple people submit applications, the applications ask for quite a bit of info

The Agent and the owner then look through the applications and pick the best one based on who they think will do the least damage to the property and have the most chance of keeping up the payments


So it is not that there are rules, a couple with no kids will probably get the place before a couple with kids & a family with an existing fixed job will probably get the place before a new arrival with no job, pets make it harder, i have found that they are not interested in credit history from RSA or previous agents, probably because they get multiple application so dont need to call internationally outside of office hours when there is someone that ticks all the boxes also applying, just give it to the local bloke.


I am not saying you wont find a place we all did, just be aware that you might not get the first place you apply for, there are a few things you can do to improve your chances, include a short cover letter with a pic of your family that shows you are not axe murderers, include a bank statement showing you have savings so will have money to pay the rent, check for lots of places, apply for several, look around when you are at a showing those are possible competitors, it is like applying for a job


Agents are not there to find you a place, they work for the property owners and their job is to find the best tenants for the owner, once you understand that, it becomes a lot easier to understand the process


Agents are also not happy with other people viewing on your behalf, this seems to be a general thing as i have heard it several times now, you might get away with it if you find a place nobody else applies for, but if nobody else applies you probably shouold see it for yourself


Edited by Nev
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Thanks so much for the detailed response @Nev. That is very important information to have and I will take it into account in our planning.

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Unfortunately @CTtoAus, renting as become a political issue at the moment. Victoria (the state where Melbourne is) has put in tough new laws to protect renters. 


The issue is that most people who buy a rental property are "mom and pop" investors who have done insufficient research and know very little about the applicable laws. They buy properties because of reasons like "the Chinese are coming in and buying up properties at inflated prices!"   or  "my mate just sold his property for a fortune!!"  There was a survey done on this, the link is below.


The issue is the low interest rates and the tax breaks given to the "mom and pop" property investors have meant they have bought up a large slice of the property market. That forces many people to become, "life long renters". The "life long renters" are not happy about the status quo, especially the tax breaks their landlord gets. So the solution is more laws to protect renters. Nothing like more legislation to fix the fall out from the previous legislation.

The issue is that there is a shortage of infrastructure. Australia has lots of land... but if you live far out of Sydney, you spend 4 hours a day travelling because the trains are overcrowded and late or you need to catch 3 buses and they are always late.


Unfortunately, it could take a while before New South Wales catches up with similar laws. So, for now in Sydney, they can use loopholes to reject your rental application because you are Korean and "Korean food smells".  The only upside is NSW is spending $80 billion on infrastructure... but at the rate Sydney is growing, that could be too little too late.


Vic laws:




Property investor survey:



Sydney's $80 billion infrastructure spend:


Edited by monsta
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