Clearly stating the maximum occupants on a Residential Tenancy Agreement is a vital part of risk reduction and asset protection for landlords, as the more people in a property, the more wear and tear. This should be checked at every property inspection, and if breached a 14 day notice should be issued to give the tenants time to correct the breach. If the tenant exceeds the number of occupants this is an unlawful act under the Residential Tenancies Amendment Act 2010 and exemplary damages of up to $1000 may be awarded to the landlord.
However if the rent is always paid promptly and the property is well presented, it could be worthwhile negotiating an increased rent to take into account the additional tenant and extra wear and tear.
For further information on solving this issue, check out our blog “Too many tenants living in your property?”