Swimming pools serve as recreational facilities for families. Both children and adults find pools exciting and as such they can spend countless hours just having fun. Most families either supervise their kids during swimming sessions or teach them how to swim so that they can do it independently even when the adults are not around. In Queensland, children have been the victims of most pool drowning incidents and this led the government to put in place pool safety laws.
Property owners and body corporates are among the entities tasked with ensuring that the pool safety standards are adhered to. If you are a property owner in Queensland and you are renting or leasing your property, you must follow the pool safety regulations for landlords as outlined in the pool safety laws. This will ensure you do not get penalised and heavily fined and at the same time, your tenant will not occupy incompliant facilities which may bring legal problems later on.
The first step as the landlord is to ensure your shared or private pool is registered. This is a requirement by the Queensland Government so that all regulated swimming pools become part of the state-wide database. Registration is free, but failure to do so can attract a penalty. Once the pool is registered on the system, there is nothing else you are to do unless you decide to lease, rent or sell your property. If you receive a pool certificate or obtain a Form 36 for your property, it will be attached against your pool on the register.
Being the landlord, you should be well versed with the legal framework governing your property. As part of this, there are three main forms that you should know exist and what they entail.
Form 23 – This is the Pool Safety Certificate and it is issued to pools that comply with the safety regulations.
Form 26 – This is a non-conformity notice given by the pool safety inspector upon finding that the pool does not comply with the safety standard.
Form 36 – This is a notice that the Pool Safety Certificate doesn’t exist. It also outlines the procedure to be followed in order to obtain compliance.
It is expected that from time to time, you will find interested clients who may want to lease your property. Again, you have to be aware of how to handle the leasing process and the documentation to give the tenant as part of the pool safety regulations for landlords.
Before you enter into a contractual agreement to lease your property, you must ensure you have a valid safety certificate for your pool. This means the certificate must be effective before the lease agreement is signed irrespective of when the tenant will start occupying the leased property. You do not have to give the tenant a copy of the pool certificate.
If you are a unit holder (landlord) and want to lease your property, you must follow the legal provisions pertaining to lease of shared pool properties. Before signing an accommodation agreement, you must ensure a valid safety certificate is in place and a copy given to the tenant. However, this does not apply for short term accommodation such as motel, hotel, or hostel.
If the certificate is not available, you should instead give a Form 36 to the tenant, body corporate and submit a copy to the Queensland Building and Construction Commission. Where a Form 36 is issued, the pool owner (body corporate) will have to get a safety certificate in a span of 90 days following the signing of the agreement.
If you own a Motel, resort or hotel, you are categorised under short-term accommodation providers and you are required by law to have a valid pool certificate. Without this document, the pool safety regulations for landlords restrict you from letting these properties. This category also includes Caravan Parks, Backpackers and Hostels.
If you are a landlord and want to have your pool fencing and barriers inspected for issuance of a compliance safety certificate, get in touch with us today. Don’t risk losing business and expose your property to penalties and fines!
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