As someone who has rented for all of their adult life, and who will likely never own a home, I welcome the reforms to Victoria's Residential Tenancies Act.
I am also not at all surprised to see criticisms of the changes from real estate bodies who act only in the interests of landlords who employ them.
I understand that you can be unlucky as a landlord, and get a bad tenant, and I have a lot of sympathy for those that find themselves in that situation. More needs to be done in those cases to help those landlords but it has to be remembered that overwhelmingly, tenants are not bad.
I have lived in places for up to seven and eight years and not seen a single cent outlayed by the landlord in that time. Effectively, they have been able to collect my rent every single week for years on end without having to spend anything at all on the upkeep of their investment.
All home owners would know that there is wear and tear on any home or unit over the course of seven or eight years, and understand that there is some outlay involved in the upkeep of a property. But a lot of landlords just seem to think there is absolutely no obligation on their part for that upkeep once a tenant is in place. The tenant is held responsible for that too, and that's just ridiculous.
If a tenant stays any length of time at all, they can be fairly sure the bond they paid will never be returned, with landlords claiming that for the wear and tear that is bound to take place over the course of years. But most landlords will claim that at the tenant's expense too.
The fact that so many pets have had to be handed into rescues to be rehomed or put down because landlords flatly refuse to consider them is very sad indeed. Allowing a tenant to pay more of a bond, or a pet bond, would be a far more reasonable approach, surely. Having said all that, my Wodonga landlord is the best I have ever had.
Name withheld, Wodonga
System is crook
An authority, independent of the financial interests of the medical colleges and universities, must be set up to organise proper training and set fair and transparent examinations for all doctors.
The specialist colleges are extorting and blackmailing trainees and doctors. They impose dictatorship but provide virtually no training or service to trainees or members. Melbourne University demands another irrelevant degree before a student can begin studying medicine – at an extortionate HECS cost of some $90,000.
Consultants are presently able to bully young doctors or wreck their careers without any fear of accountability.
The post-graduate examination system is purely designed to maintain scarcity of specialists and exclude newcomers. There is no defined syllabus for post-graduate exams nor do candidates have their papers returned to them. The exam papers are kept secret so that a candidate cannot see where they failed and so that they cannot challenge the fairness of the marking. A number of young doctors are now committing suicide because they cannot know what is required and are repeatedly failed in unfair examinations.
There is no excuse for any specialist training program to exceed three years. Trainee surgeons now have 10 years of their lives wasted in unnecessary training time filled with academic garbage.