Important changes to tenancy law occurred on October 1 last year and these affect the rights and obligations of tenants and landlords. Of particular interest: Letting fees: All property managers can now charge letting fees.
Boarding houses: Boarding houses (with more than six tenants) are now covered by the Act.
End of fixed term tenancies: A fixed term tenancy will revert to a periodic tenancy on the tenancy expiry date unless the tenant or landlord gives notice.
Landlords overseas: If a landlord is going to be overseas for more than 21 days then they have to appoint someone in New Zealand to act on their behalf.
New offences: A number of unlawful acts have been added, including interference with the supply of services, failure to comply with a tribunal termination order, harassing other tenants and neighbours, and subletting without the landlord’s consent.
Applicants who have been totally successful in a Tenancy Tribunal application are able to have their application fee refunded by the other party.
Abandoned Goods: Landlords are now more easily able to dispose of goods left behind by tenants.
For more details on these and other changes please refer to cab.org.nz or to the Department of Building and Housing website, dbh.govt.nz.
If you would like to talk about this topic with an adviser or have a query on any other topic please come in and see us at the Porirua Citizens Advice Bureau, 2nd floor Pember House, 16 Hagley St or call us on 04 237 8846 or email us on cab. porirua@ xtra. co. nz. We are open Monday to Friday, 9am till 4.30pm, and to 7pm on Thursday night.