Renting rights

Whether you are renting or managing a rental property, tenancy laws are in place to protect you. Here are some important things you should know:

  • The owner/manager must lodge bonds with Consumer and Business Services (CBS). Bonds can be lodged and refunded online using Residential Bonds Online
  • A landlord or proprietor cannot take more than the bond and one upfront rental payment at the start of a tenancy – for rooming houses – for private rentals
  • The online ‘check a bond status’ service is a quick way to track the progress of a bond refund or check whether a bond is lodged with CBS
  • Proper rent records must be kept by a landlord or proprietor and receipts given
  • Rental properties can be a target for scammers – avoid rental scams
  • Don’t overcrowd a rental property – clutter or too many people living in a property could be a fire hazard
  • The property must meet minimum housing standards and be free from health and fire hazards
  • Items that are damaged or need repair or maintenance should be reported (in writing) to the landlord/proprietor.

CBS provides free advice and information about tenancy rights and obligations. For advice or information to help resolve a dispute call 131 882. All contact with CBS is kept confidential.

Tenancy information in languages other than English.

Renting in South Australia – Know your rights before you move in (poster 132KB PDF)

For more information about renting rights and obligations visit renting.

Property management reforms – CBS News

By 28 September 2019 all employees of a registered land agent who manage residential or commercial properties must have completed specific property management training and be registered as a property manager with Consumer and Business Services (CBS). The lengthy transition period aims to provide property managers enough time to complete their training before registration becomes mandatory on 28 September 2019. CBS will start receiving applications for property manager registrations from 1 February 2019.

These changes do not affect people who manage their own properties or for friends and relatives.

Qualifications – property managers

Option 1

Approved training for property managers include:

  1. CPPDSM4007A – Identify legal and ethical requirements of property management to complete agency work
  2. CPPDSM4009B – Interpret legislation to complete agency work
  3. CPPDSM4010A – Lease property
  4. CPPDSM4011A – List property for lease *
  5. CPPDSM4013A – Market property for lease *
  6. CPPDSM4015B – Minimise agency and consumer risk
  7. CPPDSM4016A – Monitor and manage lease or tenancy agreement *
  8. CPPDSM4017A – Negotiate effectively in property transactions
  9. CPPDSM4020A – Present at tribunals *

Option 2

Completion of, or status granted in, the following subjects offered by the University of South Australia as part of the course for the Bachelor of Business (Real Estate Practice):

  • Discovering opportunities in property
  • Property asset management
  • Business law
  • Fundamentals of property law
  • Real estate practice
  • Principles of economics and
  • Property economics

Land agents will not be required to undertake any further training. However, they should plan ahead and support their employees to undertake training over the next 12-18 months. This will ensure they and their business are compliant with the new requirements before mandatory registration in September 2019.

Sales representatives that wish to undertake property management will need to lodge an application with CBS to add the property management condition to their registration. They will also need to complete the four additional subjects marked with an asterisk* under option 1 or complete all subjects listed under option 2. Sales representatives that have completed a full Certificate IV (above the minimum 17 units required for registration) may have already completed some of the additional units required.

Training providers can start delivering training with certainty over the approved qualifications the Commissioner will accept. This provides property managers with sufficient time to complete the necessary training.

Property managers will also need to meet minimum probity requirements – however, police clearance certificates must be current at the time of application. Property managers should wait to apply for a certificate until after they have completed the relevant training and CBS starts accepting applications for registration in February 2019.

Property managers that work unregistered after 28 September 2019 (and their employer, the registered land agent) may face penalties of up to $20,000.

CBS will continue to engage regularly with the real estate sector as we move towards mandatory registration for property managers by 28 September 2019.



Land Agents (Registration of Property Managers and Other Matters) Amendment Act 2017

Land Agents (Registration of Property Managers) Variation Regulations 2018

Land Agents (Registration of Property Managers and Other Matters) Amendment Act (Commencement) Proclamation 2018


Previous updates on property manager reforms

May 2018 – Tenancies Update – Changes for the real estate sector commenced 30 April 2018

September 2017 update (PDF 90KB)

February 2017 update (PDF 109KB)


Media releases

New laws for property managers set to start

Dodgy residential property managers on notice

Clock ticking on dodgy property managers



Conciliation agreements – enforced by CBS

Compulsory conciliation conferences have proven to be a successful process to solve disputes between unhappy consumers and businesses for some time. More often than not, an agreement between both parties is entered into at the end of a conference. A great result for everyone involved.

Occasionally, the business may fail to make good on all actions in the agreement. If this occurs, consumers are given the opportunity to contact CBS to help enforce the agreement. We will then apply to the magistrates court to have the make the agreement legally enforceable via a court order. This process is at no cost to the consumer.


Toppling furniture and televisions

Anchor it and save a child

Tragically, up to two children die every year from furniture or TVs toppling over.

Toppling furniture and TVs also cause hundreds of serious injuries each year. Accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. Making sure your home is safe for children could prevent a serious accident.

Don’t wait until it’s too late.

You can take steps to prevent unstable furniture and TVs from toppling over and crushing a child. Secure furniture and TVs using furniture straps, angle braces or anchors screwed into walls.

If you’re renting a home, talk to your landlord or agent to get permission to install a furniture strap, angle brace or anchor to the wall. Explain why you want to install the device and assure them that if any damage is caused by the installation, you will repair it when the tenancy ends. Make sure you get the landlord or agent’s approval in writing.


Watch the safety videos for useful information about how to anchor furniture and TVs.

Transcript – Toppling furniture safety video – short version (DOC 16K)

Transcript – Toppling furniture safety video – full version (DOC 18K)

Liquor licensing reform – CBS news

The state’s liquor licensing laws have not been reviewed in their entirety in 20 years.

South Australia (SA) is recognised internationally for its fine food and wine. SA must work to enhance its hospitality industry  – delivering more jobs for the state and helping strengthen SA’s reputation interstate and overseas as a great tourist destination.

The state government’s goal is to ensure that its liquor licensing regime:

  • reflects contemporary standards and expectations
  • ensures there are adequate safeguards in place to protect the public
  • reduces red tape and administrative burden for industry.

Visit ‘Liquor licensing reform‘ on the Attorney-General’s website to read more.

Proposed changes

After the Bill passes parliament, it is expected that reforms will be implemented in a staged process.

Implemented first

Some of the proposed reforms that are likely to be implemented first include:

  • introducing an automatic extension for trading on New Year’s Eve until 2am on New Year’s Day
  • a simpler and cost-effective process for people applying to work in the security industry as crowd controllers – removes the need to apply twice to work in a licensed premises
  • removing some of the current trading restrictions, including the obligations to provide meals for some new classes of licence
  • removing the requirement for entertainment consent other than for prescribed entertainment as defined in the Act
  • reforms relating to the Licensing Court of South Australia.

Implemented at later stages

Proposed reforms that are expected to be implemented at later stages will be those that require significant system and operational changes including:

  • introduction of a new licensing class system
  • increasing efficiency and reducing red tape, particularly during the application process
  • replacement of the ‘needs test’ with a test based on community interest.
  • additional regulation targeted at underage drinking.

What happens next?

Throughout the reform process, the state government will be working with industry and the community on the introduction of the new laws.

While the introduction of the Bill outlines the legal framework for the new system, there are areas proposed by the independent review that government are still considering.  In addition, amendments will be required in the regulations  and the Commissioner’s Codes of Practice.

Changes to the regulations and code

Amendments expected to be considered as part of the regulations and code include changes to support the:

  • new classes of licence, in particular details of the Short Term Licence class and the new annual fees
  • various reforms in the Bill such as minors on licensed premises, the sale of liquor through direct sales – through the internet or by phone – and the new power to enable seizure of an evidence of age document
  • requirements relating to responsible service of alcohol training
  • the offence of selling or supplying liquor to an intoxicated person.

The government will be consulting with impacted members of the community during the development of the changes to the regulations and Codes of Practice, and further information will be provided at that time.

Check this site regularly for information that may impact stakeholders and the community.

Background information

The state government appointed former Supreme Court Justice, the Honourable Timothy Anderson QC to conduct an independent review into South Australia’s liquor licensing laws. The public were invited to make submissions to a liquor licensing discussion paper that looked at current laws and industry framework.

Mr Anderson’s report was prepared following extensive consultation with the liquor and hospitality industry, local government and other interested groups.

Prior to the introduction of the new Bill in March 2017, the government consulted with the community and stakeholders on proposed changes arising from the review conducted by Mr Anderson.

View changes made following community feedback and submissions to the draft Bill.


Banned ethanol burners – media release


Product safety ban on portable ethanol burners

Many types of portable decorative ethanol burners are currently banned from sale in South Australia and across the country with serious injuries reported increasing concerns about their safety.

Federal Small Business Minister Michael McCormack has today imposed a national interim ban to prevent the supply of certain types of decorative alcohol fuelled devices, also known as ethanol burners.

The national interim ban replaces interim bans imposed by the Ministers responsible for the Australian Consumer Law in Western Australia, Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, the ACT, Tasmania and the Northern Territory.

The action follows reports of 113 incidents, many resulting in serious injuries, across the country since 2010. Of these, six incidents occurred in South Australia, each incident with one person injured.

CBS warns consumers who have banned ethanol-fuelled burners in their home to stop using them immediately.

The interim ban means that retailers and online traders across Australia must take the banned products off their shelves or delete them from online catalogues and cease sales immediately. Individuals face a maximum penalty of $220,000 and corporations face a maximum penalty of $1.1 million if found to be selling banned products.

This interim ban affects all table-top versions and many freestanding versions of the product. The interim ban does not affect products with a power output of more than 4.5 kW, those that require installation in a fixed position, and those used in the heating or warming of food.

Retailers and suppliers can go to the ACCC’s product safety website to get further information to help them understand the product range covered by the national interim ban.

Consumers seeking to purchase decorative alcohol fuelled devices should check with suppliers that any product offered is not subject to the ban.

Those concerned about products they have previously purchased should visit the Product Safety Australia website for more information about decorative alcohol fuelled devices.

Media Release – Interim ban imposed on unsafe ethanol burners

Product safety – Don’t fuel the fire video

Your hair, your rights – Australian Consumer Law

A trip to the hairdresser shouldn't be an unqualified disasterHairdressing and barbering services automatically come with consumer guarantees. Customers can expect the service will be given with due care and skill, within a reasonable timeframe, and be fit for purpose.

Imagine if your scalp was burnt because bleach was left on for too long or you asked for your beard to be trimmed into a bandholz and you walked out with a goatee.

Qualified hairdressers and barbers must also tell you if a service shouldn’t be done, for example, if you ask for your hair to be bleached more levels than the manufacturer recommends.

A qualified hairdresser or barber can guarantee their products and services but not products that you have purchased elsewhere and have asked them to apply, such as hair colour or hair extensions.

Here are some tips to help you get the best result from your next appointment.

  • Always use someone who is qualified
    Ask to see the person’s hairdressing or barber qualification certificates, whether they work in a shop or in a home-based business.
  • Ask about the price before you book
    Prices will vary because some businesses pay higher rents due to their location, spend longer on the service or provide ‘luxuries’ as part of their services eg – café quality coffee and massage chairs.
  • Check the terms and conditions before buying a daily deal voucher or coupon
    Sometimes vouchers can only be used for certain days or times. Always check if the voucher can be used for the day you book and at the time you request.

Visit Solving a problem with a business on SA.GOV for advice from CBS or contact us on 131 882.

Hairdressers and barbers can also print a poster to display in their business that encourages customers to ask to see their qualifications.

Previous trading round announcements

Proposed Dates and Results of Gaming Machine Entitlement Trading Rounds 2012 to 2014

Trading Round 10/2015 – closed

Trading Round 9/2015 – closed

Trading Round 8/2015 – closed

Trading Round 7/2014 – closed

Trading Round 6/2014 – closed

Trading Round 5/2014 – closed

Trading Round 4/2013 – closed

Trading Round 3/2013 – closed

Trading Round 2/2012 – closed

Trading Round 1/2012 – closed

NBN – connecting confidently

With the construction of the National Broadband Network (NBN) well underway, consumers and businesses will need to consider which service provider they will contract with to migrate to the NBN. The mapped rollout of the NBN gives providers the heads up on what areas are next on the list for installation and connection.

This transparent process attracts more door to door and telemarketing opportunities for service providers. Understanding your rights when you receive an unexpected phone call or knock at the door will help protect you from contracts with unwanted and unfavourable terms and in some cases even a scam. When making a decision about who to contract, consider:

  • the terms and conditions
  • length of the contract
  • penalties for ending a contract
  • if a verbal promise matches the written contract

You don’t need to make a decision on the spot. It is better to take your time to consider the deal and compare with other suppliers.

If you do enter into an agreement with an uninvited seller at the door or over the phone, remember the following protections may apply:

  • 10 day cooling off period (to cancel the contract without penalty)
  • a written copy of the agreement must be provided
  • a document outlining your right to cool off and a cooling off form must be provided
  • a seller must leave at your request and not contact you for at least 30 days

Remember, it’s okay to walk away, close the door or hang up the phone!

More information

NBN rollout map

Beware NBN scams

Indigenous consumers – It’s okay to walk away

More on door to door sales practices


Romance scams

170201_1587_CBS_ValentinesDayScams_V2 (FINAL)


If you’re looking for love this Valentine’s Day it pays to be vigilant when engaging with strangers online.

Australians lost almost $10 million to romance scams in February last year, the highest of any month. Overall more than $24.3 million was lost to romance scammers in 2016.*

Most romance scams are carried out via the internet, social networking sites as well as email.

Scammers groom people into trusting them, and eventually ask for money to help with a personal problem, such as some misfortune or a sick relative. The scammer may communicate with a person for months before asking for money.

Follow these tips to help you stay safe from romance scams:

  • Be aware that scammers are prevalent online.
  • Be especially wary of anyone who asks you for money. Never transfer money via direct deposit, money order or international transfer.
  • Do a reverse image search of the person’s profile picture. This can help you identify if the image has been taken from someone else, or it belongs to a few people with different names. You can do this through Google images by clicking on the camera icon on the desktop version of the site’s search bar.
  • Be careful about the amount of personal information you share. Avoid sharing compromising material, which scammers can use to blackmail you.
  • If you agree to meet someone in person, make sure you let your family and friends know where you will be going, and meet somewhere in a public place like a café.

*Data from the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) Scamwatch service.

For more information visit Scamwatch