Who pays for damage to my property?
As the tenant, you are responsible for the full repair costs for any damage done by yourself or any person you permit onto the property, for example, visitors (see Visitors).
Who do I contact if my home is damaged?
Damage should be reported to the department as soon as possible:
- If the damage occurs after hours and requires emergency, immediate or urgent attention, call the after-hours emergency number, 1800 808 107
All other damage should be reported during office hours:
- If you live in the Brisbane area, contact the department's Call Centre.
- In regional areas, contact your local QBuild Office's maintenance section
Some building products used prior to 1990 may be hazardous when damaged. Materials used in wall and floor coverings, ceilings and roofing may contain asbestos. Any drilling, sanding, nailing etc may cause particles to become airborne, creating a potential health hazard to occupants. (If the material is not damaged, there is no hazard to health).
If any part of your home is damaged and you think it may contain asbestos, do not dust, sweep or vacuum the debris. As detailed above, contact the department's call centre, your nearest QBuild office or call the after-hours emergency maintenance number for advice.
The department will inspect the damage.
What if I did not cause the damage?
If you are unsure how the damage occurred, or if the damage was caused by a break-in, contact your nearest police station, lodge a report and then contact the department. You will need to give the department a police report incident number. In these cases, you may not be responsible for the associated costs.
How do I pay for the repairs?
The department will send you a letter detailing the repair work completed and the cost. This cost will be recorded as a maintenance charge to your rental account.
For broken glass or if you lose your keys and are locked out after hours, in most cases, it will be cheaper for you to engage a private contractor to repair the damage.
Can I fix the damage myself?
Repairs to materials that you think may contain asbestos must be carried out by an appropriately qualified tradesperson.
For other items, discuss the repairs with staff at your nearest Housing Service Centre. You may be able to employ your own contractor or fix the damage yourself. Whether you complete the repairs yourself, or engage a tradesperson, the repairs must be completed to an acceptable standard. If the repairs are not to an acceptable standard, the department will re-do the repair work and charge you for the cost.
What happens if I do not fix the damage or tell the department about it?
The department inspects your property before your move in, every twelve months during your tenancy and when you leave the property. If the damage is identified during your tenancy, the department can arrange for repairs and charge the costs to you.
Full details of any damage not considered to be fair wear and tear will be photographed and recorded by maintenance staff. You have the option of either repairing all damage before handing in the keys or the department will repair the damage when you leave the home and charge you for the cost.
If you have outstanding debts for damage caused to a property during a previous tenancy, the debt must be fully repaid before the department will provide you with any future housing assistance.
Outstanding debts of ex-tenants are referred to debt collection agencies for recovery (see Maintenance debts – ending your tenancy).