What are Condition Reports?
A condition report records the condition of the premises, for example whether it is clean and in a reasonable state of repair. You may be asked to complete a condition report when you move in and out of a rental property.
Your landlord or agent must complete the condition report with you present, or somebody you ask to be present for you, unless it is not practical to do so. If the landlord does not invite you, you may argue the condition report is invalid.
Ingoing Condition Report
The ingoing condition report records the state of the property before a tenant moves in. The report should address the condition of all the walls, ceiling and floors as well as fixtures such as benchtops, toilets and cupboards etc
The ingoing condition report must be done by your landlord or agent within 3 business days from when you move in. It is very important that you make notes of any damage to anything in the property, such as cracks in the walls or marks on the floor, and takes lots and lots of photos!
Once completed, you must be given the report. You have 5 business days to either:
- Accept the condition report by signing it and giving it back to your landlord or agent; or
- Make changes to the condition report and return it to the landlord
Write down anything that is damaged or dirty even if it is small. If you don’t, your landlord or agent might ask you to pay for it when you move out (even if you didn’t do it).
If you do not make any changes to the condition report and give it back within 5 business days, the law presumes that you agree with everything the landlord has written (even if it’s wrong!). You do not get a second chance so make sure it’s done right.
TIP: take lots of photos! It is important so that you can show your landlord or the NTCAT that any damage to the property was not your fault.
I finished making my changes and handed the condition report back, what next?
Once you have given back the report, the landlord must do either of the following within 5 business days:
- Accept your changes and give you the report back after signing it; or
- Talk to you about the changes and come to an agreement that both of you are happy with.
If the landlord does not accept your changes or no agreement is reached they are presumed to have accepted your changes.
What If there’s a dispute about the Ingoing Condition Report?
If you and your landlord cannot agree on changes you have made to the condition report, either of you can apply to NTCAT. NTCAT will then make a decision about the ingoing condition report.
Outgoing Condition Report
The outgoing condition report must be done by the landlord within 3 days of you moving out. Just like the ingoing condition report, your landlord or agent must complete the report with you present, or somebody you ask to go on your behalf.
Once the landlord finishes the outgoing report and gives it to you, you can either:
- Accept the condition report by signing it and giving it back to the landlord; or
- Refuse to accept the condition report
If there’s a dispute about the Outgoing Condition Report
If you and your landlord cannot agree about the outgoing condition report within 7 business days, either you or the landlord can apply to NTCAT. NTCAT will then make a decision about the outgoing condition report.
Darwin Community Legal Service 2019: Non-profit community groups have permission to reproduce parts of this publication as long as the original meaning is retained and proper credit is given to DCLS, as the publisher.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this publication is a guide to the law in the Northern Territory. It is not a substitute for legal advice. You should talk to a lawyer about your particular legal issue. The information contained in this factsheet is current as at November 2019.