CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) ECONOMIC STIMULUS UPDATE – COMMERCIAL AND RESIDENTIAL TENANCIES

CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) ECONOMIC STIMULUS UPDATE – COMMERCIAL AND RESIDENTIAL TENANCIES

The national cabinet met on Sunday night and then on Monday night where commercial residential tenancy issues were tabled. So far, the following has been released in respect to these issues:

Commercial tenants, landlords and financial institutions are encouraged to sit down together to find a way through to ensure that businesses can survive and be there on the other side. As part of this, National Cabinet agreed to a common set of principles, endorsed by Treasurers, to underpin and govern intervention to aid commercial tenancies as follows:

  • a short term, temporary moratorium on eviction for non-payment of rent to be applied across commercial tenancies impacted by severe rental distress due to coronavirus;
  • tenants and landlords are encouraged to agree on rent relief or temporary amendments to the lease;
  • the reduction or waiver of rental payment for a defined period for impacted tenants;
  • the ability for tenants to terminate leases and/or seek mediation or conciliation on the grounds of financial distress;
  • commercial property owners should ensure that any benefits received in respect of their properties should also benefit their tenants in proportion to the economic impact caused by coronavirus;
  • landlords and tenants not significantly affected by coronavirus are expected to honour their lease and rental agreements; and
  • cost-sharing or deferral of losses between landlords and tenants, with Commonwealth, state and territory governments, local government and financial institutions to consider mechanisms to provide assistance.

The national cabinet will meet again on Friday 3 March to provide guidance on how they plan to assist.

If you are interested in learning more about the JobKeeper Subsidy Payment, cashflow forecasting, or for a referral to a legal professional in respect to leasing matters, please contact either Sam Cimino, Sam Marzano or any team member on (03) 8602 6100.