WARNING TO LANDLORDS
I refer to your article on ‘‘Slum landlords’’ (December 1).
I’m glad to hear of efforts towards standards for private (and state) landlords, but it is a shame to see continued appalling lack of concern for tenants who are struggling/desperate for a home and are typically at the landlords’ mercy.
The landlords know those tenants are the ones who are least likely to complain about living conditions.
During 2005 Housing New Zealand Community Renewal projects I raised many issues specifically on the quality of repairs/maintenance/ renovations, such as not replacing the original window frames (which were at least 40 years old), and even water leaking though a lightbulb.
Back then my point was that if you’re going to spend that much money on the renovations/ revamps, do it properly or else it will end up costing more in the long run.
In saying that, the carpet was replacedwith underlay (I was told at the time) and, thankfully, some of it was recently replaced again owing to wear but, instead of underlay, we found another layer of carpet was used in 2005.
This would also have had an impact on heat retention in the house since then.
I’m very curious to know whether billing then indicated new underlay and who signed off on it. Now my point remains the same but, additionally, any repair/maintenance work has to be verified at the time by the appropriate agency, with photos to confirm materials used.
Perhaps this should be incorporated into any future landlord requirements.
Further quality community renewal projects should have been the focus and not millions spent on the revamp of a call centre system.
Some things have improved, to judge by recent maintenance by Housing New Zealand. Back in 2005 I said in Kapi-Mana News: ‘‘Do it right, otherwise invite precautions after the fact’’, and ‘What good is a freshly painted door if it doesn’t close properly?’’
This all fell on deaf ears back then. How about now for both private and state landlords?