SIGN OFF | Qld Tenants Fight For Right To Hang Election Signage
Queensland renters claim they are being forced to remove election signage from their rental properties.
Tenants Queensland CEO Penny Carr said her organisation had received several inquiries from tenants who have been told to remove election signage from outside their rental properties in recent weeks.
In some instances, the signage has been removed by real estate agents and landlords without their consent.
“As far as tenants’ rights go there is an obligation on behalf of the agent or landlord to provide “quiet enjoyment” for their residents and they must not interfere with a renter’s reasonable peace, comfort or privacy,” said Ms Carr.
“It underlies the notion that the property is the person’s home while they are renting there.
“In relation to election signage, we consider it a breach of a tenant's reasonable peace, comfort and privacy for a lessor or agent to demand the removal of political signage so long as the signs are legal, and not causing damage to the property or making the sign a fixture of the property.”
Ms Carr warned entering premises without consent to remove signage may also constitute an offence under the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 (Qld) or be considered an act of trespass.
The Brisbane City Council allows elections signs on private property without approval from the council during designated election periods.
Elections signs on private property must not constitute a safety hazard for any person using the footpath or public space adjoining the property where the sign is located.
Ms Carr urged unit dwellers to check with their respective body corporate by-laws to make sure consent was not needed prior to displaying signage.
“Most unit complexes have by-laws that restrict you from changing the external appearance of the lot without first gaining consent of the owner or Body Corporate,” she said.
“It is suggested that you first check the Body Corporate by-laws for your building before installing any election signage outside your premises.”
Ms Carr, whose organisation has joined a community alliance campaigning to Make Renting Fair in Queensland, said there was little to no protection against landlords issuing a ‘without grounds’ termination notice, deterring many more renters from displaying election signage and generally asserting their rights.