Skip to content


Commercial tenancy relief scheme

A scheme to alleviate financial hardship faced by tenants and landlords as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19).

On this page

  • Commercial tenancy relief scheme
  • Access to free mediation via Victorian Small Business Commission
  • Leasing advice fact sheets in English, Arabic, Simplified Chinese and Vietnamese
  • Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund

Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme: responding to coronavirus

The Victorian Government introduced a Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme (the Scheme) to alleviate financial hardship faced by tenants and landlords as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19). Regulations for the Scheme have been made under the COVID-19 Omnibus (Emergency Measures) Act 2020.

On 20 August 2020 the Victorian Government announced plans for an extension and changes to the Scheme until 31 December 2020. This means negotiations for rent relief between a commercial tenant and their landlord must consider this timeframe.

The Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) expects that tenants and landlords will continue to negotiate rent relief and, if requested, attend mediation with the VSBC in anticipation that the announced changes will come into effect in the coming weeks.

The VSBC encourages tenants and landlords to negotiate on the basis of this announcement, which states commercial landlords will be required to provide rent relief in proportion with the fall in turnover being experienced by eligible tenants going forward.

Previous announcement: What is the commercial tenancy relief scheme?

The Victorian Government announced (15 April 2020) a commercial tenancy relief scheme to alleviate financial hardship faced by tenants and landlords as a result of coronavirus (COVID‑19).

For commercial tenants and landlords, the scheme provided the following support:

  • a six-month moratorium on commercial tenancy evictions from 29 March 2020 for the non-payment of rent for small to medium enterprises with an annual turnover under $50 million that have experienced a minimum 30 per cent reduction in turnover due to coronavirus (COVID‑19)
  • freeze on rent increases during the moratorium for commercial tenants
  • a requirement for a landlord to offer rent relief taking into account the reduction in a tenant’s turnover due to coronavirus (COVID‑19) and the landlord’s ability to offer financial relief, to be negotiated between tenant and landlord
  • a free mediation service for commercial tenants and landlords to support fair tenancy negotiations.

The Victorian Government also provided land tax relief to commercial landlords that provide rent relief to their tenants, provided:

  • the tenant’s annual turnover doesn’t exceed $50 million
  • is participating in the Commonwealth’s JobKeeper program, and
  • is suffering financial stress or hardship as a result of the pandemic.

The Victorian Government also provide land tax relief to residential landlords who provide rent relief to eligible tenants.

To understand the process involved for landlords and tenants under the commercial tenancy relief scheme, please see the process for commercial tenancy page.

You can apply for free mediation with the VSBC to resolve your rent dispute, making sure you include a copy of your or your tenant’s lease.

If you would like to discuss your commercial tenancy situation please email the Victorian Small Business Commission at enquiries@vsbc.vic.gov.au or telephone 13 87 22.

Leasing advice fact sheets

The Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) has supplied leasing advice fact sheets in English, Arabic, Simplified Chinese and Vietnamese. For more information for commercial tenants and landlords, visit the VSBC website.

Responding to COVID-19: Leasing advice English

Responding to COVID-19: Leasing advice Arabic  الإستجابة لجائحة COVID‑19: نصائح التأجير

Responding to COVID-19: Leasing advice Simplified Chinese 应对COVID-19:租赁意见书

Responding to COVID-19: Leasing advice Vietnamese Đối phó với COVID-19: Trợ giúp hòa giải về chuyện thuê cơ sở thương mại

Leasing advice and scenarios

The Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) has leasing advice and scenarios in English, Simplified Chinese, Arabic and Vietnamese. For more information and guidance for commercial tenants and landlords, visit the VSBC website.

Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund

The Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund has been created in recognition of small, private landlords who may not have the capacity to provide rent reductions to their tenants under the requirements of the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme.

The Victorian Government is offering grants of up to $3,000 per tenancy to eligible small private, individual and joint-owner landlords, who are facing financial hardship after reducing rent for their tenants under CTRS requirements.

Learn more