Urban Land and Housing – Property Management – What is Tica?
TICA is Australia’s largest tenancy database and is the most widely used screening service in the real estate industry. They collect, hold and give out information about tenants who real estate agents and landlords say are ‘bad tenants’. The records they hold are separate from those kept by credit reporting agencies and serve a different function. They are concerned entirely with a person’s performance as a tenant.
Real estate agents can subscribe to Tica. This allows them to check listings made about tenants by other subscribers and to add information about tenants.
Restrictions on listing – landlords/agents
A landlord/agent can only list information about a person in a tenant database if:
• the person was a tenant under a residential tenancy agreement that has terminated (or they were a co-tenant whose tenancy has terminated), and
• they breached the tenancy agreement, and
• because of the breach, they owe an amount more than the bond for the tenancy agreement or the Consumer, Trader and Tenancy Tribunal (CTTT) has made a termination order, and
• the information identifies the nature of the breach and is accurate, complete and unambiguous.
Before making a listing
Before the landlord/agent can list information about a tenant, they must:
• give the tenant a copy of the information they want to list on the database (or otherwise take steps to disclose it to the tenant)
• give the tenant at least 14 days to review the information and respond
• consider any response by the tenant.
(If the landlord/agent fails to do this, they face a fine of up to $2,200.)
In their response the tenant can:
• object to the entry of the information in the database, or
• object that the information is inaccurate, incomplete or ambiguous.
Restrictions on listing – database operators
A database operator, or anyone else, must not enter information about a tenant in a database unless:
• it is at the request of a landlord or landlord’s agent
• the landlord/agent is making the listing in accordance with the ‘Restrictions on listing’ outlined above.
Finding out about a listing
On application for a tenancy
If you apply for a tenancy and the landlord/agent finds information about you on a tenant database, they must write to you within 7 days stating:
• that you are listed
• the details of the landlord/agent who listed you (from whom you can seek a copy of the information)
• how to contact the database operator to find out what information it holds about you
• how and in what circumstances you can have the information removed or amended
If you would like more information please don’t hesitate to contact our Property Management Team on (02) 9672 6055