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Changes to Queensland’s smoke alarm legislation mean the clock is ticking until all homes that are leased or sold have to be fitted with interconnected photoelectric smoke alarms.
In a recent video, REIQ CEO Antonia Mercorella raised three misconceptions that have confused people about the new legislation.
The first is about a possible extension of the time frame to ensure houses are fitted with the required alarms.
“There is no indication from government that they are looking to grant a time extension,” Ms Mercorella said.
“So, that deadline of 1 January 2022 is absolutely the one that people need to be considering and meeting.”
Although there is a little less than two years until the smoke alarms need to be installed, the thought that there is plenty of time left is a misconception, she said.
There are about 566,000 rental properties in Queensland, and with the number of skilled electricians available to do the work, that deadline is just around the corner.
“The issue of skilled electricians is a great segue to the third misconception, which is that there are plenty of them out there to undertake this work,” she said.
“The reality is that we have a shortage of skilled technicians who understand the new legislative requirements.”
Ms Mercorella is concerned too many landlords are waiting, and when they do decide to act, they will not have enough time to meet that deadline.
“Not meeting the deadline does present some serious risks to property owners,” she said.
“If you are looking to rent your property, you will not be able to do so if it doesn’t have compliant smoke alarms by that date.”
At its core, this legislation is about saving lives, which is why the REIQ is passionate about this legislation, Ms Mercorella said.
“There is no Australian who wants to continue seeing people losing their lives in house fires, so it is incredibly important that all of us get on board and support these legislative reforms.”