Go­ing flat­ting

Element - - Business -

Time to fly the coop! With a lit­tle plan­ning, fi­nances don’t have to be a big deal.

Your big­gest cost will be rent, paid weekly or fort­nightly. The Depart­ment of Build­ing and Hous­ing’s Flat­ting 101 web­site gives an idea of typ­i­cal rents in dif­fer­ent ar­eas.

Be­fore you move in it’s usual to pay a bond of up to four weeks’ rent as well as two weeks’ rent in ad­vance.

For phone, in­ter­net and, some­times, wa­ter pay­ments (and su­per­mar­ket shop­ping if you’re flat­mates don’t in­sist on their own food), a good idea is to have a ‘kitty’ – a spe­cial fund to which ev­ery­one con­trib­utes the same amount. A bank ac­count for the kitty can be set up, from which au­to­matic pay­ments are made. Any num­ber of things can be paid for from the kitty, from party sup­plies to the pur­chase or hireage of ap­pli­ances (a land­lord is only re­quired to sup­ply an

It’s a good idea to have ev­ery­one’s names on bills or share them around to re­duce the risk.

oven). The tricky bit is who gets what when the flat dis­bands, so com­mon sense must pre­vail.

Read the me­ters reg­u­larly so you’re not hit with a big bill for which you haven’t bud­geted. An un­paid bill can ef­fect your credit his­tory. What­ever way you choose to pay for things it’s a good idea to keep writ­ten records of kitty pay­ments and bills.

You may be tempted not to have in­sur­ance, but con­sider if your land­lord’s prop­erty is dam­aged. If you caused a fire you could be charged for the re­pair. You may want to be cov­ered for per­sonal li­a­bil­ity.

If you’re strug­gling fi­nan­cially, call Fam­ily Bud­get­ing Ser­vices on 0508 BUD­GET for free ad­vice.

If your prob­lem is with your land­lord, call the Depart­ment of Build­ing and Hous­ing’s helpline 0800 83 62 62 for ad­vice, or 0800 737 666 for bond in­for­ma­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.