Community Education and Network Development Worker Phebe Wong will be giving free tenancy advice at a SANDBAG community lunch in February.
Phebe is part of an organisation called Tenants Queensland, a community legal centre that gives free advice and assistance to people renting, whether they are in private rentals, public and community housing, caravan parks, or boarding houses.
“The top issues people often seek advice on are having repairs done, bond refunds, and ending their leases early,” Phebe says.
“If they access our service, we can give them advice on the spot, or if they require further assistance, we refer a caseworker to the person, who will work one on one with them. Assistance could be as simple as helping them to fill out a tenancy form, or advocating on behalf of the tenant to get a repair done.”
As indicated by 2016 census data, the 4017 area has over 3500 rental dwellings, with only half of these being affordable to median renter households. The data also indicates that 31.9% of renters in the Sandgate area experience rental stress, with the area having a moderate ‘Rental Vulnerability Index’ score, a measure devised by Tenants Queensland to gauge “the vulnerability of persons to problems that may make their rental housing unaffordable, insecure or inappropriate.”
Phebe hopes that the Lunch will help people recognise the services that are available to them.
“We want to reach out to the Sandgate community,” she says. “Hopefully people will realise we are here to assist them, and this might even become a regular event.”
The Lunch will be held on Wednesday 28 February from 12pm-12.30pm at the SANDBAG Community Hall, 153 Rainbow Street, Sandgate.
For free tenancy advice over the phone, contact Tenants Queensland on 1300 744 263.