Question from Adriana updated on 30th June 2017:
Is there any way to contact the landlord of someone else? My neighbours are currently going against their tenancy agreement and I want to tell the landlord. But I am unsure how I can do so? Is there a go between of sorts who can pass the message on?
Our expert Allan Galloway responded:
Contact the local council and ask if it can tell you who owns the rental home, but be aware that policies differ among councils. There are also subscription-based property data websites that sell ownership information. Any information held by Tenancy Services is subject to the Privacy Act and cannot be released to a third party unless required by law.
The Residential Tenancies Act only applies to the relationship between a tenant and their landlord. Under the Act, a tenant must not interfere with the reasonable peace, comfort or privacy of their neighbours.
There are steps a landlord can take if they believe a tenant is in breach of the Act.
However, the Act does not explicitly require a landlord to take action against a tenant who breaches this section of the Act – unless the neighbours are also tenants of the same landlord. Neither does it allow a third party to take action against the landlord over their tenant’s behaviour – unless the third party is also a tenant of the same landlord.
You could get legal advice from a solicitor or your local community law centre to find out whether there are any other options to resolve the matter, but this might be costly. If you believe it could be a criminal matter, you could contact the New Zealand Police.
For more on the rights and responsibilities of landlords and tenants, go to www.tenancy.govt.nz.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment provides information and guidance on building law and compliance, services including weathertight homes, and advice for tenants and landlords.