Christmas parties: What are your rights as a tenant?

16 Dec 2016

Are you planning on throwing a Christmas party in the next few days? When you’re renting in Melbourne, you need to make sure you’re following all of the terms of your rental agreement, as well as the Rights and Responsibilities document from Consumer Affairs Victoria. If you don’t follow the guidelines in either of these documents, you could be fined, or have the tenancy terminated.

Over the Christmas period, however, you’ll have friends and family over for drinks and nibbles, maybe even to stay for a few nights. While this all seems harmless, you need to understand what your rights (and restrictions) are.

Can you throw a massive party?

You cannot cause any damage to the property, and that includes damage from your personal guests as well.

The answer to this question is most likely ‘no’ for a number of reasons. You cannot cause any damage to the property, and that includes damage from your guests as well. If you throw a huge party with all of your friends and things get out of hand, windows could be broken or holes could be put in the walls.

You are also responsible for not disrupting your neighbours. A good tenant will be on friendly terms with the people that live around them, and if you’re planning on having a big end-of-year celebration, it is common courtesy to inform these people that festivities could be going late into the night. If any of them ask you to keep it down after a certain time, or come over and ask during the party, you must respect their wishes. They have a right to complain if you don’t, and that could result in a breach of your contract.

So you can’t throw a big party – but you can still have fun!

In a rental, you probably won’t be asking 100 people around for a rave with the music so loud it’ll blow everyone’s eardrums. You can still have people over for a really good time, though. You can have drinks and music and dancing even, but you can’t disturb your neighbours unreasonably and you can’t cause damage.

A photo posted by Peppe Cantone (@peppecant) on

Keep a good enough handle on proceedings and those things will never eventuate. If you’re worried about your landlord coming around to check on you, remember they have to give you written notice at least 24 hours prior – if they don’t, they will be in breach of your rights as their tenant, which puts them in the wrong.

For more information about your rights as a tenant and throwing parties this Christmas season, read through your tenancy agreement carefully and brush up on your consumer rights!