Policy: Security Camera’s Usage
Property Providers’ vision is to “Help People Live Better” by being Sydney’s most flexible residential rental company. This vision is driven by three core values; Passion, Performance and Partnership. This policy has been created in line with our guiding principle that all great long-term partnerships have a strong foundation of mutual respect, mutual reward, mutual investment and mutual risk.
The purpose of this document is to communicate the Property Providers’ Policy concerning the installation, usage and data storage of residential security cameras. This policy applies to all parties engaged in rental transactions including Owners/Investors, the Agency and all Short- Term Rental guests and Long-Term Leasing Tenants with a residential lease.
For the avoidance of doubt, in this document, the usage of “security cameras” includes any cameras, smart doorbells, audio-visual and other smart devices or surveillance equipment used for security or monitoring purposes. This includes devices that may or may not be actively or remotely monitored and the storage of recordings from these devices.
The usage of residential security cameras to monitor public spaces for property security is common. Visible security around a home helps to deter robberies and vandalism. However, regulation prevents the usage of these devices in private spaces and the recording of any conversations without permission to protect the privacy of guests and tenants.
Images and recordings are considered personal information under Australian law. All collection, storage, deletion, and access to recordings must follow the Australian Privacy Principles. Online booking sites such as Airbnb have strict rules for the disclosure of security cameras in listings for short-term rentals. Failure to disclose at the time of booking may result in listings being removed and/or guest cancellations.
All parties need to be aware of their responsibilities to balance the protection of property with the privacy of guests and tenants.
- To be clear about the role/responsibility and liability of the guest/tenant and the agency concerning privacy and security cameras
- To provide best practice recommendations that proactively avoid problems occurring for the benefit of all parties
- To implement a fair and respectful framework that balances the interests of Owners/investors, The Agency as well and Guest/Tenants
- To support the company’s guiding principle that all long-term relationships have a foundation of mutual respect, mutual reward, mutual investment, and mutual risk.
Security Cameras – Agency Policy:
Owners for all Rental Types:
- If security cameras are installed at a property, (before, during or after any tenant/guest occupancy) the owner is required to advise the Property Providers in writing immediately.
- Security cameras may only be installed outside the building, facing common or public areas of the property (e.g. building door, garage or access gates). Any permissions for the installation of these cameras (e.g. body corporate or neighbours) fall under the owner’s responsibility.
- Security cameras must not be installed in any private areas of a property, including bedrooms or other spaces used for sleeping, bathrooms or facing private pools or spas.
- Property Owners acknowledge and accept that all listings and marketing material must publicly disclose that security cameras are installed in a property and the location of these devices. Disclosure is mandatory, even if devices are switched off or unmonitored. Owners also acknowledge that content regarding cameras will be disclosed in pre and post-arrival notifications as well as the property’s home guide (if applicable)
- Hidden devices are illegal and any usage of such devices in or around the property will breach any agreement, with cancellation costs, removal from online booking sites, and any other liability falling solely on the owner.
- Audio monitoring and storage are not permitted to protect guest privacy. All audio devices must be switched off for the duration of any guest stay or tenant lease.
- Owners must not actively monitor security cameras or devices during the guest stay or tenant lease.
- Recordings may only be stored for:
- Guests – the duration of a guest stay + 10 days.
- Tenants – the duration of a tenant lease or 12 months, whatever is earliest.
- Any requests for access to recordings must be actioned within 30 days.
Short-Term Rentals Guests & Long-Term Tenants:
- Guest and tenants should not rely on security cameras for their personal security. Security footage may be used to validate rental agreement compliance.
- Guests and tenants must not tamper with or intentionally cover security devices. Any damage to or intentional obstruction of cameras by guests may result in a partial or complete loss of your security deposit or bond.
- Guests and tenants have the right to access personal information, and may be requested by contacting Property Providers
- Tenants must receive written authorisation from the owner to add security cameras to a property.
- Owners may share stored security footage/recordings with the agency and the agency may only use this for compliance purposes. It has no other purpose related to the rental agreement and the agency copy should be destroyed once this purpose is fulfilled.
- The Agency does not provide monitoring services, nor has access to security footage unless shared by the owner for the purposes of property security and compliance.
- Any requests to access recordings will be actioned within 30 days of the request.
- Personal privacy and property security are paramount. This policy aims to balance these needs respectfully and transparently.
Effective Date: This policy is effective 8 December 2023.