Documents for rental applications

After you find a suitable rental property, you need to gather personal information and copies of documents to submit with your rental application.

The application form will typically ask for your:

  • rental history or previous living arrangements
  • rental reference
  • personal references
  • evidence of income
  • identification.

You can decide whether to provide this information, but not doing so could affect your chances of getting a rental property.

Below are some documents you may need to provide when you apply for a tenancy. Ask the lessor or agent which documents they need, as this can vary.

Rental history and references

  • contact details for the lessor or agent of your previous rental properties, including names, addresses and phone numbers. You may ask for a written reference, however, most lessors or agents will contact the referee directly.
  • rent receipts and/or copies of your rent payment records.
  • if you have not rented before, a history of your accommodation for the last few years e.g. if you have been living with friends or family.

Personal references

Before you apply, contact your personal referees to tell them they may be contacted by the lessor or agent and make sure you have their current contact details.

If the person providing your personal reference is someone you’re staying with, or have stayed with, they could state whether you:

  • paid board
  • paid on time
  • contributed to utility costs
  • had issues with neighbours or other household members
  • kept the home clean and tidy
  • kept furniture and appliances in good condition.

Most tenancy applications include a privacy consent form to give the lessor or agent permission to contact your referees.

Evidence of income

  • employment history and current payslips
  • income statement from Centrelink or Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • your last notice of assessment from the Australian Taxation Office if you’re a contractor or self-employed.


  • photographic identification (e.g. driver’s licence, passport, Photo Identification Card)
  • birth certificate or birth card (available from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages)
  • Medicare and/or Health Care Card
  • your most recent bank statement in your name
  • copies of accounts in your name (e.g. electricity or phone accounts). Don’t provide accounts that are overdue or final notices.

The application form will list the type and number of identity documents you need to provide.

More information