Brisbane Smoke Alarms Side by Side


Are you selling a home in Queensland? Here's all you need to know about smoke alarm compliance, certificates, and the sales contract.

New laws established in the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Act 1990 were enacted on January 1, 2022. These new rules impose additional obligations on Queensland property sellers to ensure that;

On each floor, interconnected photoelectric smoke alarms (without an ionization sensor) have been installed, as well as in each bedroom and the interconnecting hallway outside the bedrooms.

If not hardwired, be connected to the mains power source or powered by a non-removable 10-year lithium battery.

Comply with Australian Standard 3786:2014, be under ten years old, and work when tested.


Disclosure obligations and smoke alarm compliance

If you sell a residential property in Queensland, you must disclose certain information to the buyer before signing a contract. This information is mentioned in two critical documents:

Contract of Sale

The standard REIQ contract of sale in Queensland includes a part the seller must fill before the buyer signs the contract, noting if the property is equipped with compliant smoke alarms. When preparing a property for sale, these smoke alarm standards must be met before it may settle.

You must negotiate with this obligation as a seller and must meet the minimum smoke alarm criteria. Failure to install compliance smoke alarms is a violation (even if it was disclosed), and the seller may face a fine (a seller can still be penalized for committing an offense after the property has been sold). Furthermore, the buyer may receive a 0.15% rise in the contract purchase price. As a result, it is suggested that QLD sellers install proper interconnected photoelectric smoke alarms at their cost before settlement.


The battery in your smoke alarm matters

Form 24

When a property is sold, the vendor must also file a Form 24 (transfer of title form) with Titles Queensland (previously known as the Queensland Land Registry Office), declaring that the smoke alarm regulation requirements have been completed and that the purchaser is aware of the fact.

Smoke alarm compliance certificate when selling in QLD?

The Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) is Queensland’s premier professional body for the real estate field. Their website clarifies a few topics concerning smoke alarm compliance certificates for sale in Queensland. The points include:

Does the seller need to provide a smoke alarm compliance certificate from a qualified tradesperson?

The seller is not required to offer a certificate confirming that the installed smoke alarms are compliant, and the seller must only check the necessary box in the contract’s schedule.

Who verifies the compliance of smoke alarms? Who pays for it?

Before selling a property in Brisbane, the seller shall confirm that the smoke alarms installed comply with the Fire and Emergency Services Act. The buyer has the right to arrange for an inspection of the smoke alarms (separate from any building or pest condition) with a knowledgeable inspector of their choice and at their own cost.

What happens if the smoke alarms are not compliant? What if the contract is unconditional?

If the smoke alarms are not compliant, the buyer is entitled to a 0.15% price adjustment in their favor (if requested on or before settlement). The buyer’s only option is to terminate the contract; they cannot postpone payment or seek reimbursement from the seller after settlement. It makes no difference whether the agreement is conditional or unconditional.
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