Commercial landlord hardship fund 3
Covid-19

Commercial landlord hardship fund 3

MB+M Business Services Team brings you another article on: Commercial landlord hardship fund 3

For landlords experiencing hardship because of waiving rent for their tenants may now be eligible for grants of up to $10,000 under the Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund 3.

Small landlords can apply for a grant of up to $6,000 per eligible tenancy, in proportion to their ownership share. In cases where landlords are experiencing acute hardship because of the rent waiver agreed with their tenant(s), the grant may be increased to a maximum of $10,000 per eligible tenancy.

Applications to the Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund 3 opened on 13 September 2021 and close on 15 January 2022, providing there are funds still available.

Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme
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The Victorian Government introduced the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme to provide relief to commercial tenants affected by COVID-19. The scheme helps tenants and landlords to negotiate reduced rents.

Landlords who reduce rent for tenants impacted by coronavirus may be eligible for Land Tax relief.

The Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme provides proportionate rent relief and a freeze on rental increases for businesses that have experienced a reduction in turnover due to coronavirus, as well as a moratorium on evictions for eligible tenants who can’t pay their rent, without first undertaking mediation through the Victorian Small Business Commission;

The scheme also provides for free dispute resolution services through the Victorian Small Business Commission to help tenants and landlords renegotiate lease agreements (including rent relief) through waivers and deferrals.

Landlord assistance
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To be eligible for relief under this program, the landlord and tenant must agree to a rent waiver or non-payment of rent between 28 July 2021 and 15 January.

The landlord must have total taxable landholdings of less than $3 million, including part holdings, but excluding principal place of residence, or where a property is held on trust, the total taxable landholdings of the trust must be less than $3 million

A landlord’s commercial rent must represent more than 50 per cent of their total gross annual income for the 2019−20 financial year.

Small landlords who meet the program eligibility criteria can also apply if the property is a residential property subject to a commercial lease.

Small landlords who received a grant under the Commercial Landlord Hardship Funds 1 and 2 may also apply for
a grant under round 3.

How to apply
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To apply, each part-owner in a property must complete a separate application for the grant. Landlords with multiple properties covered by the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme must make a separate application for each property.

Applications must be made online via the Business Victoria website (business.vic.gov.au). The Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund 3 will be open for applications from 10 September 2021 until 11.59pm on 15 January 2022, or until funds are exhausted.

Grant amount
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The grant will be equal to the dollar amount of the rent waiver provided to the tenant(s) between 28 July 2021 and 15 January 2022, to a maximum of $6,000 per eligible tenancy.

The grant will be increased to a maximum of $10,000 per eligible tenancy for landlords that demonstrate acute financial hardship

Landlords can only receive one grant per tenancy under the Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund 3.

Grants will be allocated according to ownership share in the property if there are multiple landlords. For example, if three part-owners hold equal shares in a property, each part-owner is entitled to one third of the grant.

Application evidence required
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Property location and land value – Landlords must attach a full copy of one of the following documents to confirm the property location and land value:
a)  2021 State Revenue Office issued Land Tax Assessment Notice for landholdings of $250,000−$3 million, or
b)  2021-22 Municipal Rates Notice for landholdings up to $250,000, or
c)  2021-22 Municipal Rates Notice for property purchased during 2021.

Usual lease agreement  – Landlords must attach a copy of the lease agreement in place before the tenant(s)’s request for rent relief, showing the total dollar amount of monthly rent (excl. GST) and the tenant’s contact details and Australian Business Number.

Rent relief agreement – Landlords must submit a landlord acceptance letter showing details of the agreed rent relief, including:
a)  rent relief start and end dates;
b)  total dollar amount of monthly rent (excl. GST) and per cent of rent waived;
c)  the dollar amount (excl. GST) and per cent of rent deferred (if any).

Acute Hardship Consideration – Landlords requesting acute hardship consideration must submit a letter from a qualified agent that includes confirmation of:
a)  commercial rent represents at least 70 per cent of their total gross annual income for the 2019−20 financial year;  
b)  that the landlord is neither an owner occupier nor a related party of the tenant.

How we can help

If you need assistance with accessing the Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund 3, please contact your M B + M advisor on 03 58219177

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READ MORE: 

  1. MB+M: COVID Relief – what’s available?
  2. MB+M: Victoria $400m Business Support Package
  3. Services Australia – Getting help during coronavirus (COVID-19)

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