The reintroduced Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme will ease pressure by providing rent relief for eligible tenants, while separate support will be provided to landlords who do the right thing by their tenants.
The Scheme will be available to businesses with an annual turnover of less than $50 million and have suffered a decline in turnover of at least 30 per cent due to coronavirus.
Landlords will be required to provide proportional rent relief in line with a business’s reduction in turnover. A mediation service for tenants and landlords will further support fair tenancy negotiations.
Tenants and landlords will be encouraged to enter negotiations directly, with the Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) available to provide mediation if parties cannot reach satisfactory agreement. Landlords will not be able to lock out or evict tenants without a determination from the VSBC.
Legislation will shortly be introduced to enact the Scheme, which will be applied from 28 July to ensure rent relief can start.
Fully funded by the Victorian Government, an $80 million hardship fund for landlords who provide rent relief to eligible tenants will be created, with further details to be confirmed in due course.
Tenants and landlords can contact the Victorian Small Business Commission for further information on 13 87 22.