Sell with Confidence
Read More
News

How old do you need to be to sign a lease?

By George Hadgelias

While the majority of renters across Australia are over 18, there are situations where people under 18 want to rent a property.

So, how old does a person need to be to sign a lease? Do the rules differ dependent on state?

In Australia, it’s illegal to discriminate on the basis of age, so technically there’s no age minimum on renting and a tenant can sign a lease at 17 or even younger, but there are nuances in each state and territory.

So, yes that means you can sign a lease at 17 provided you meet the requirements of the landlord and/or agent.

New South Wales

In New South Wales, there “shouldn’t be any restriction on renting based on your age”, according to Luke Moroney, founder of Search Party Property.

As is the case in several states, a prospective tenant must understand the agreement they’re signing.

Unless there are other issues that support a landlord’s decision for turning someone under 18 down as a tenant, they’re not legally able to use age as a reason.

Victoria

In Victoria, there’s isn’t a restriction as long as the person applying understands the agreement they’re signing.

Western Australia

In Western Australia, a prospective tenant must be older than 16 years of age to enter into a tenancy and the law stipulates that the tenancy agreement needs to be “fair and just”.

Queensland

In Queensland, there isn’t any restriction on renting based on age.

“If under 18 years, you’ll be treated the same way as an adult who is signed the residential tenancy agreement,” Mr Moroney said. 

Northern Territory

In the Northern Territory, a would-be tenant must be older than 16 years to enter into a tenancy – the same as in Western Australia.

Any tenancy agreement they sign needs to be “fair and just”.

Australian Capital Territory

In the Australian Capital Territory there “shouldn’t be any restriction on renting based on your age”, Mr Moroney said.

As is the case in several states, a prospective tenant must understand the agreement they’re signing.

South Australia

In South Australia, the rules are the same as in New South Wales and Victoria. There is technically not a restriction on how old you need to be to sign a lease.

Mr Moroney said the person applying must comprehend the agreement they’re signing.

Tasmania

Following what happens in other states, there’s no restriction in Tasmania regarding age and renting.

How can I complain about potential age discrimination?

Under Australian law, it’s illegal to discriminate on the basis of what are called “protected attributes”, which include age, disability, race, sex, intersex status, gender identity and sexual orientation in certain areas of public life, including education and employment. It means landlords are not allowed to discriminate based on age.

If a prospective tenant thinks they have been discriminated against, they have a right to make a complaint to the Australian Human Rights Commission. (https://humanrights.gov.au/complaints/make-complaint)

States and territories also have their own complaints process, which usually involves an online form as the first step.

CLICK HERE for more information.

Up to Date

Latest News

  • How to maximise renting before buying

    So how can you get into your own place as quickly as possible while still paying the rent? We asked a financial adviser for his tips on what renters can do to increase their chances of buying. Click here to read more.

    Read Full Post