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Spend Carefully

Rent going up? Try these tips

Financial Wellbeing Coach

2023-08-31 00:00

Estimated reading time
 5 min

In this article

  • Be prepared for your rent increases
  • 5 ways to manage your rent going up
  • Landlord and tenant rules by state 

Rent hikes? More like rent yikes, right.

With many Aussie landlords passing on current interest rate rises to their tenants, you’re not alone if you’re seeing a little larger rent increase than usual. But what many people don’t know is that while you may not be able to combat the hikes entirely, it does pay to know what you’re entitled to, and what’s fair.

Renters often think they just have to put up or move out - what else can you do? Well, you might have recourse and we’re here to take you through it. Read on for some tips and rules that Aussies are using to manage the rising cost of rent.

Here’s what’s happening

According to CoreLogic data, rents have gone up by about 10% over the last year across the country as demand for housing – driven by population growth, a chronic shortage of available properties and tight vacancy rates – heats up.

Hot tip: if you're on a fixed-term tenancy agreement of two years or less, your rent generally can't be increased unless it's written into the agreement. However, once that term is up people usually move onto a rolling lease unless you sign another agreement, which is where the rent increases can occur.

Whether you’re looking for a new place now or simply want to protect yourself in the future, here are five ideas to keep in mind to help manage your rent in the future:

1. Sign an extended lease

    In general, a landlord should not increase your rent during an extended lease (more than 12 months) — unless this flexibility is built into the agreement. Read it carefully before you sign! You can also try and negotiate a smaller rental fee for a longer stay — finding a good tenant is not easy, so if they feel they’re onto a good thing they may just relent.

2. Get a housemate

    If you can manage this, getting another person in to share the rent load is one way to lower costs for singles and couples. The added bonus is that aside from splitting the rent, you potentially have another person to chip in for groceries and utilities too.

3. Live your studio loft dreams

    If you’re single and don’t mind a cosy space, renting a smaller apartment like an open-plan studio may be one option. Studio apartments are often cheaper than other one-bedroom apartments, and they are generally located in central areas, which means you get to live in a trendy location, without paying the hefty rent that usually goes with it.

4. Look at rentals in neighbouring suburbs

    Is the grass a little green in the next suburb over? Generally speaking the further away from the CBD you go, the cheaper rent is. While living further out comes with additional costs (transport, longer commutes) it’s still worthwhile to thoroughly research suburbs you might have discounted before, as things are always changing.

5. Get rent assistance

    Recognising that so many Australians are doing it tough, the federal government has raised the maximum rate of Commonwealth Rent Assistance by 15 per cent in addition to the Consumer Price Index increase, from 30 September 2023. The Commonwealth Rental Assistance is a program offering fortnightly payments to eligible Australians, including those on income support or family tax benefits, who live in private rental accommodation or other specified types of housing. Check the eligibility requirements and special rules.

6. Lean on your bank

    Whether it’s to point you in the direction of some good advice, or actually help you reorganise your finances, your bank is a good place to start if you’re not sure how to afford a recent rent increase. If you’re with ANZ, give us a call or pop into a branch and we’ll talk it out.

Lastly, learn your state’s laws

Depending on which state you live in, the rules for landlords and tenants vary. A few states have recently updated their polices around renting, so we recommend looking into the laws relevant to your state, and making note of your current rental agreement to see how it relates to your situation. Have a skim here:

• New South Wales

    Rent increases are limited once every 12 months for periodic (continuing) leases; and from December 2022, real estate agents in NSW are no longer allowed to invite or solicit an offer for rent that is higher than the advertised price. Neat. See here for more information.

• Victoria

    As of March 2021, renters in Victoria were given new protections on a number of fronts, including a ban on rent bidding (where tenants offer more than the advertised price), plus new restrictions on what landlords can ask prospective tenants. It’s also illegal for a landlord to increase rent during a fixed term agreement unless the lease says this is ok in advance. See here for more information.

• Queensland

    Legislation to limit rent increase frequency to once every 12 months has just come into effect from the 1st July 2023. Hot! See here for more information.

• Western Australia

    Like many other states, the WA government has taken steps to update its tenancy laws in the last year. Rent bidding has been banned, and landlords can only increase rent once every 12 months. See here for more information.

• South Australia

    A host of new measures have been introduced to better protect renters, including requiring landlords to give tenants a minimum of 60 days (from a previous 28) notice of eviction; ending rent bidding wars and more. That’s why they call it Radelaide. See here for more information.

• Northern Territory

    In the top end, landlords can’t top the rent up without giving at east 30 days’ notice in writing, and increases must be written into the tenancy agreement from the beginning. The date from which the increase is to take effect must be at least six months after the date the tenancy commenced or six months from the last increase. See here for more information.


    Like many other states, Australia’s capital city (and surrounds) has been making some changes to their tenancy laws — such as banning ‘no cause’ eviction notices or soliciting rent bids above advertised price — which came into play in April this year. See here for more information.

• Tasmania

    Down on the southern island, landlords can only increase the rent for a non-fixed term lease, or a fixed term lease that explicitly allows for rent increases. The tenant must be given at least 60 clear days' notice and there must be at least 12 months between increases. This does not apply to social housing properties where only 60 days’ notice must be given. See here for more information.

The reality is, renters are influenced by the ebbs and flows of supply and demand, and that can mean that at times there’s less supply and higher prices. However, demand can wane as quickly as it surges – people move on, change jobs or their families grow, so new nests are always coming onto the market. Having your alerts set up so new properties jump straight into your inbox and knowing all your options and rights can mean that you’re ready to go when you see something you like.

Rent going up? Try these tips
Financial Wellbeing Coach

Get rent-ready

New to renting? Get ready to hit the market running with our rental checklist.

Read more here



The information set out above is general in nature and has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on the information, you should consider whether the information is appropriate for you having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. By providing this information ANZ does not intend to provide any financial advice or other advice or recommendations. You should seek independent financial, legal, tax and other relevant advice having regard to your particular circumstances.