The NSW government announced an extension of its Retail and Other Commercial Leases (COVID-19) Regulation to 31 December 2020. The relief was originally set to expire on 25 October.
Tenants will be required to re-establish their eligibility under the extension to the regulation if they wish to request further rent relief, while landlords will also be required to respond to a tenant’s request for further rent relief in a reasonable time frame.
Eligible landlords that reduce the rent of eligible commercial and residential tenants between October and December can apply for a land tax concession on relevant properties.
This new concession is in addition to the concession provided to landlords that reduced rent between April and September.
The concession will be applied to any unpaid 2020 land tax liability, and refunds will be issued for payments already made this year.
In addition, landlords will be able to receive up to 25 per cent land tax concession where they provide rent relief to commercial and residential tenants in financial distress from October to December.
NSW Minister for Finance and Small Business Damien Tudehope said the measures were designed to strike the right balance to support tenants and landlords in commercial agreements.
“The government earlier this year acted quickly to implement the national cabinet’s Code of Conduct for commercial tenancies to provide support to small and medium-sized businesses, but a lot of businesses are still doing it tough, which is why we are extending this support,” Mr Tudehope said.
“For many small businesses, rent is one of the biggest fixed costs, so easing this burden will help keep businesses in business and keep people in jobs.”
Current commercial rent relief arrangements in other states and territories
Victoria announced the extension of its commercial rent relief scheme until 31 December 2020.
Queensland also extended its relief for commercial tenants until 31 December 2020.
South Australia extended its commercial rent relief scheme until 3 January 2021.
Western Australia extended its relief to commercial tenants until 28 March 2021.
Tasmania, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory will have their commercial rent relief scheme finish at the end of September 2020.