Small and medium businesses will now be granted rental waivers and deferrals under a mandatory Code of Conduct unveiled by Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Under the Code of Conduct, landlords will be required to reduce rent proportionate to the trading reduction in the tenant’s business caused by the coronavirus pandemic through a combination of waivers of rent and deferrals of rents.  Landlords must offer waivers of rent no less than 50 per cent, while the balance must be in the form of a rental deferral.

The payment of the rental deferrals must be amortised over the balance of the lease term and for a period of no less than 24 months. The code will cover commercial tenancies, including retail, office and industrial, and will be eligible for SME tenants with an annual turnover of up to $50 million. These SME tenants must also qualify for the government’s JobKeeper program.

Click here to read full code of conduct