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Government feedback aims to make life better for renters

Posted 28 August 2018 by Gold FM in Media Release

The public is being asked for feedback on new Government proposals aimed at making life better for renters, housing and urban development.

“Our tenancy laws are antiquated and don’t reflect the fact that renting is now a long-term reality for many of our families. A third of all New Zealanders now rent,” Housing and Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said.

“Insecure tenure can forcer families to continually move house. This is particularly tough on children whose education suffers when they have to keep changing schools.”

Phil Twyford urges landlords, tenants and other interested people to have their say on the proposals covered in a discussion document on reforming the Residential Tenancies Act released today.

“We want to strike a balance between providing tenants with security of tenure and allowing them to make their house a home, while protecting the rights and interests of landlords.”

The discussion document covers proposals on:

ending no cause tenancy terminations while ensuring landlords can still get rid of rogue tenants

increasing the amount of notice a landlord must generally give tenants to terminate a tenancy from 42 days to 90 days

whether changes to fixed-term agreements are justified to improve security of tenure

limiting rent increases to once a year

whether there should be limitations on the practice of ‘rent bidding’

whether the general obligations that tenants and landlords have remain fit for purpose

better equipping tenants and landlords to reach agreement about pets and minor alternations to the home

whether further controls for boarding houses are needed to provide adequate protection for boarding house tenants

introducing new tools and processes into the compliance and enforcement system.

“As people rent for longer, they want to be secure in their homes and put down roots in their community. That’s why making life better for renters is an important aspect of the Government’s housing plan,” Phil Twyford said.

The discussion document and a link to an online submission survey are available at: www.mbie.govt.nz/rta-reform.

Consultation runs for eight weeks and closes at 5pm, on Sunday 21 October 2018.