Can body corporate deny me to use short-term rental in my unit complex? – Daniel, QLD

Q: Can body corporate deny me to use short-term rental in my unit complex in East Brisbane? I have spoken to BCC and they have advised that it is ok from the council point of view.

A: In Queensland, body corporates cannot stop or restrict short-term rentals. While the body corporate oversees and maintains the common property and parts of a lot, it will not be able to dictate how owners choose to let out their buildings in the short term.

Short-term letting such as Airbnb and HomeAway rentals impact tourism in a positive manner, so state governments have somewhat relaxed laws around them. This is supported by the Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997 Subsection 180(3) which states that if a lot may be used for residential purposes, the by-laws cannot restrict the type of residential use to which it is put.

It may be worth keeping in mind that there could be by-laws which your body corporate set to protect the common property and encourage property owners to mutually agree on their maintenance and peace-keeping so that short-term letting activities do not cause a problem for neighbours. This will also go a long way in keeping you trouble-free with neighbours when it comes to body corporate living.