What is the law? There are various pieces of legislation that we need to adhere to here at Ausfire Compliance Services. Below is some helpful info and links quoted from various legislative bodies websites and documents to help you understand the various requirements.


The following below has been taken from:


Information on who can repair or replace a smoke alarm or change a battery in a tenancy

From 23 March 2020, NSW landlords and agents need to ensure that smoke alarms installed in rented properties are in working order.

Requirements for landlords and agents

  • Where a smoke alarm is not in working order, landlords and agents must ensure the alarm is repaired (this includes replacing a battery) within 2 business days.
  • Landlords and agents must check smoke alarms every year to ensure they are working.
  • Landlords and agents must ensure:
    • smoke alarms are replaced within 10 years of manufacture, or earlier if specified by the manufacturer
    • batteries are installed or replaced every year (or for lithium batteries, in the period specified by the manufacturer).
  • Landlords and agents must give at least 2 business days’ notice to inspect or assess the need for smoke alarm repair or replacement, and at least 1 hour notice to carry out repair or replacement of a smoke alarm.


To prevent unnecessary tragedies and prevent loss of life as well as minimizing damage to property New South Parliment enacted the Building Legislation Amendment (Smoke Alarms) Act 2006. This Act required all buildings where people sleep must have (a) Atleast one working smoke alarm within. (b) Smoke alarms must be maintained in accordance with manufactures reccomendations and (c) no tenant is to tamper or remove the smoke alarm at any time.

The legislation comes under Clause 146A of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, and Division 7A of Part 9 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 and more info can be found at www.fire.nsw.gov.au



For Landlords to be able to pass on water usage charges their property must meet minimum criteria.

The minimum criteria for passing on water usage charges are:

  • the rental premises must be individually metered (or water is delivered by vehicle, such as those with water tanks on rural properties), and
  • the charges must not exceed the amount billed for water usage by the water supplier, and

A rental property is considered water efficient if it meets these standards. All internal cold water taps and single mixer taps for kitchen sinks and bathroom hand basins and shower heads must have a maximum flow of 9L/min and no leaking taps around the property.



Australian homes often feature blinds, curtains and other window coverings that have cords and using the cords, a person can raise, lower, open, or close the blinds or curtains. All leased premises, both residential and commercial, with any corded internal window coverings must have the cords fitted and approved safety devices and warning labels to prevent babies, toddlers and young children accidentally becoming entangled in the cords and suffering strangulation. Non-compliance carries fines of up to $220,000 for individuals and $1.1 million for companies, as well as the risk of compensation claims. 

Insurance Policies vary, but most have an exclusion clause that means that the insurance company does not have to pay out for negligence claims where the Policy Owner knowingly takes no action or breaks the law relating to fixing a defect or making the premises safer.    

The mandatory standard came into effect from 1/1/2015 

http://www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au, https://www.productsafety.gov.au


Under recent legislative changes, all owners corporations in NSW must install window safety devices on all applicable windows before 13 March 2018. This means that a window safety device needs to installed on any openable window where the lowest level of the window is less than 1.7m above the internal floor and the fall outside is more than 2m. The device needs to be capable of resisting an outward horizontal action of 250N and can have a maximum opening space no more than 12.5cm (125mm). 


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