The small business specialists
Phone: 13 12 49
In Western Australia, most retail shop leases are regulated by the Commercial Tenancy (Retail Shops) Agreement Act 1985. Having an understanding of the Act is essential if you intend to lease premises to operate a retail business.
TIP: This information is intended as a guide and it does not replace the need to seek independent legal, financial and business advice before signing a lease or associated documentation, paying rent or other monies, or occupying the leased premises.
The Act was amended in recent years and these amendments came into effect from 1 January 2013. Not all of these amendments apply to leases entered into before this date. We have produced a series of commercial leasing publications to answer common questions about the Act specific to those leases entered into before and after 1 January 2013.
The Act generally applies to leases for premises with a lettable area of 1000 m2 or less and that are:
The regulations set out what is classed as a 'specified business' as at 1 January 2013, these are:
The Act allows for some retail shops with a lettable area greater than 1000 m2 to also be covered by the Act. As at 1 January 2013 no shops had been included.
The Act does not apply to leases:
The purpose of the Act is to:
The Act principally focuses on the need for transparency of information and fairness in the lease by:
The Act requires a landlord to provide to a tenant the following documents when a lease is being considered:
These documents should be provided to the tenant at least seven days before entering into the lease.
The Act prevents leases from including a clause which requires the shop to be open for specified hours or times.
Under the Act, the Small Business Commissioner’s role is to provide assistance to attempt to resolve disputes relating to retail shop leases. Both tenants and landlords can approach us for assistance to resolve their dispute. Depending on the nature of the dispute, it may be appropriate for the dispute to be referred to mediation. You can learn more about our alternative dispute resolution (ADR) service.
In most circumstances, parties wanting to apply to the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) must first obtain a certificate from the Small Business Commissioner and include this with their application.
Parties may go directly to the SAT for certain administrative or urgent matters. Use the SAT Wizard to determine whether you need to obtain a certificate from the Small Business Commissioner.