Author Archives: Niall Heeran

What Does a Fully Compliant Rental Property Look Like?

Rental property Wellington

If we showed you five photos of five different houses, would you know which ones complied with New Zealand tenancy law?

In New Zealand, all landlords and tenants have rights and responsibilities under the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 (the Act). A rental property must meet compliance guidelines set out by the Act and the Healthy Homes Standards.

Some people mistakenly assume that older homes are more likely than new builds to have compliance issues. In fact, the age of a home is not often a determining factor. What matters most is the knowledge of tenancy law and the Healthy Homes Standards that the property owner or landlord has (and their willingness to comply).

We’ve even seen brand new builds fail compliance checks because builders have missed steps or have tried to take short-cuts. Ultimately, as a landlord, you are responsible for making sure your property is compliant before renting it.

How Does the Bright-line Test Affect You?

Bright-line Test

If you’re not going to live in the property you own, are you better off renting it out or selling it? Will this make it easier for first-time homeowners to buy property?

There are many questions surrounding the bright-line test. You will have heard a lot of discussion about it in the news recently. It’s been around for years. However, recent changes have been made to it that are intended to slow down the real estate market to help prospective new homeowners get on the property ladder. In short, the government is hoping to deter property investors from pushing prices up. This is by taxing people who profit from buying and selling property.

Hence, we thought we’d answer a few frequently asked questions here to help you make informed decisions about how the recent changes to the bright-line test may affect you.

Healthy Homes Standards

Healthy Homes Standards affecting Rental Properties in Wellington, New Zealand

You will have heard a lot of news and discussion about the Healthy Homes Standards affecting rental properties in New Zealand. We thought we’d break down some of the information to make it easier for you to understand your expectations and responsibilities, whether you are a property investor or tenant. While none of these new requirements is hugely expensive on its own (insulation should already be installed), when you add them all together, they can add up to quite a lot when all done at once.

Tenancy Legislation – Can I Move Back into My Investment Property?

Investment property tenancy legal documentation

Some of the new Tenancy Legislation changes that came into effect in February 2021 involve new requirements for tenancy notice periods.

Before the legislation changed, tenants needed to give 21 days’ notice to end a periodic tenancy for no reason. And landlords could issue a 90-day notice to end a periodic tenancy without giving a specific reason. Therefore, under the new tenancy legislation, both tenant and landlord need to do things slightly differently.

Tenants now need to give an extra week’s notice. Increasing to 28 days’ notice. It appears to be harder for a landlord to end a tenancy. We did some digging, though, and found out that most landlords aren’t affected by changes in notice periods within the legislation.