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Painting (Internal) Policy

1. Background

Effective from 6 May 2009 DCJ Housing does not grant permission to tenants to undertake major internal painting in their home or offer any type of rebate for painting.

Major painting includes surface preparation, sanding, applying undercoats or any other activities affecting the integrity of the surface.

Major internal painting of DCJ Housing properties should only be undertaken by qualified tradespeople who are licensed to ensure that the work meets the relevant standards. The skilled tradespeople are also trained to deal with any hazardous building materials and to ensure that Occupational Health and Safety Guidelines are met. The tradespeople will ensure that any intumescent paint (a special paint that helps prevent the spread of fire) remains intact.

In some circumstances, tenants may be given approval to paint the walls in a decorative coat.

2. Scope

This policy applies to all tenants living in dwellings owned by DCJ Housing, including tenants of the Aboriginal Housing Office. Tenant painting of Headleased properties is not allowed.

3. Policy statement

DCJ Housing tenants are not allowed to undertake major internal painting in their home. In some circumstances tenants may be given approval to paint the walls in a decorative coat.

Business rules

Major internal painting

Any requests for major internal painting will be assessed by the tenant’s local office and scheduled into the Planned Works Program. Urgent properties may receive higher priority.

The Property Assessment Survey (PAS) has recorded the true condition of the property against benchmark conditions. DCJ Housing staff should check the PAS information and property file to establish if the PAS identified that the property needs painting.

A DCJ Housing representative may be required to visit a tenant’s property to verify the condition of the paint work.

If the PAS and/or Team Inspection finds the paint work is in good condition, then there is no requirement to include the property on the Planned Works Program.

If the information is available, DCJ Housing staff should provide the tenant with an indication as to when the property will be painted.

Minor internal painting (decorative coat)

DCJ Housing understands that some tenants may want to personalise their dwelling.

If the property is not scheduled on any Planned Works Program, a tenant may paint a decorative coat/s on walls only using pastel or neutral colours. They can only use 100% acrylic (water based) paint.

They are not permitted to:

  1. Use dark colours such as black, brown, red and purple
  2. Paint doors, ceiling or architraves
  3. Hang wallpaper or paint decorative friezes
  4. Sand, apply undercoats or any other activities affecting the condition of the surface.


Before proceeding, the tenant must understand that DCJ Housing does not offer any rental or other rebates for the painting. Also, if the property is painted in the future as part of the Planned Works Program, the dwelling will be painted DCJ Housing’s standard colours and their decorative colour will be painted over. In such a situation, the tenant will not be eligible for compensation.

If a property inspection finds that the decorative painting does not meet DCJ Housing’s standards and/or the tenant has undertaken other painting works, the tenant may be responsible for Tenant Damage Charges.

If the property is part of a Planned Works Program, the local office should assess the condition of the property and consider giving urgent properties higher priority. Once the Planned Works have been completed, the tenant may reapply to paint their property in a decorative coat.


Tenants should follow the paint manufacturer’s guidelines and also take all necessary precautions to protect the floor covering and their personal belongings. Tenants should also clean the affected walls with sugar soap (mild detergent diluted in water) prior to painting and ensure any power outlets and switches are protected.

Occupational health & safety and painting

When undertaking the decorative painting, tenants should be mindful of the obvious risks connected with painting - not only to the person applying the paint but to all occupants and take practical steps to guard against these risks. Tenants should follow the manufacturers advice in regards to handling, disposal and fumes associated with the paint.

4. Legislation and compliance

DCJ Housing manages its properties in accordance with the Housing Act 2001 and the Residential Tenancy Act 2010.

5. Related documentation

6. Further information

Appealing decisions or actions

If a tenant disagrees with a decision we have made, they are encouraged to speak to their Client Service Officer to seek a resolution of those concerns. The next step, if they still believe an incorrect decision was made, is to ask for a formal review of the decision.

For specific information on reviews, the tenant can ask a Client Service Officer for a copy of the fact sheet appeals and reviewing decisions, or read the Client Service Delivery and Appeals Policy.

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Last updated: 05 Nov 2019