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Rental Bonds Online now mandatory

2 February 2017

It is now mandatory for landlords and agents to invite residential tenants to lodge the bond using Rental Bonds Online (RBO), and persistent non-compliance could result in a $2,200 fine.

Changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 2010, which came into effect on Monday 30 January 2017, make it mandatory to offer the online service to tenants signing a new lease.

It is also mandatory for landlords and agencies to register for RBO, though the paper-based method is still available for tenants who cannot access the internet.

The new change is also included in the NSW Fair Trading new tenant checklist factsheet, which you can download here or from REI Forms Live here.

If residents starting a new tenancy aren’t offered the online service, they are encouraged to make a complaint to NSW Fair Trading, which can result in a fine.

NSW Fair Trading Commissioner Rod Stowe said: “Rental Bonds Online has been a game-changer for Fair Trading, allowing us to manage residential bond monies more efficiently than ever before.

“It’s also easy and convenient for landlords, real-estate agencies and tenants.”

NSW Fair Trading introduced RBO in November 2015 to simplify the process of lodging, managing and refunding residential bond monies.

Previously, Fair Trading handled more than 500,000 bond related transactions received annually by a paper-based system. 

Since the launch of RBO, over 7,000 real-estate agencies and landlords have signed up to the service, with more than 76,000 active accounts established and over $123 million worth of bond money lodged.

What is RBO?

RBO is an online service which allows tenants to pay their bond directly to NSW Fair Trading with a debit/credit card or BPAY.

They can check the status and progress of their bond lodgement or refund at any time through their own RBO account, and also receive email and text notifications related to their bond.

Landlords and agents can register at