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If a renter dies

Information about what happens if a tenant dies and how a rental agreement is terminated.

If a sole renter dies while they are renting, their rental agreement terminates on the earliest of the following dates:

  • date agreed to in writing between the rental provider and the next of kin or legal representative of the renter
  • termination date on notice of intention to vacate given by the next of kin or legal representative to rental provider
  • termination date on notice to vacate issued by the rental provider to next of kin or legal representative
  • termination date specified by VCAT.

See s. 91N—Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Notice to vacate given by representative

A notice of intention to vacate may be given by the legal personal representative of the next of kin of a sole renter who has died. The date of termination must be specified in the notice and this date may be before the end of any fixed term agreement. The termination date is not less than 28 days after the date notice is given.

See s. 91N(3)—Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Notice to vacate by rental provider

A rental provider may issue a notice to vacate to the next of kin or legal representative of a deceased renter. The notice must state a termination date, which may be earlier than the end of a fixed term agreement if there is one.

See s. 91N—Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

If the rental provider cannot issue a notice

If the rental provider cannot locate the next of kin or a legal representative of a sole deceased renter, the rental provider may apply to VCAT for an order to terminate the agreement and a possession order, if required.

See s. 91N(4)—Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Vacant possession may be given

The next of kin or legal representative of a deceased renter may choose to give vacant possession to a rental provider at any time before a termination date.

See s. 91N(6)—Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

No liability from the estate

Where vacant possession is given before the termination date, the estate will not be liable for any rent for the period between the date vacant possession was given and the termination date in a notice to vacate.

See s. 91N(7)—Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

More than one renter?

If there is more than one renter, this does not apply. The remaining renters can continue to be subject to the rental agreement with the rental provider.

More information

Legislation

Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)

  • s. 91N—termination after death of sole renter
  • s. 91Z—notice of intention to vacate

See Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Updated