Question from Robyn updated on 28th May 2012:
Our expert Megan Martin responded:
Tenants are required to leave all chattels provided by the landlord at the end of the tenancy. If the curtains were not listed on the tenancy agreement at the start of the tenancy and were omitted from the initial property inspection report then you may wish to contact the tenant and arrange to document that fact that curtains were provided as part of the tenancy. You could do this by adding the curtains to the list of chattels on the tenancy agreement and having both parties sign next to the change. This will help avoid any misunderstanding over what was provided at the start of the tenancy and the fact that those items are to be left in the property at the end of the tenancy. Removing chattels that were provided as part of the tenancy such as items of furniture, constitutes a variation to the tenancy agreement and can only be done if agreed to by both parties. Neither the tenant nor the landlord are obliged to agree to any such variation. I suggest you contact your tenants to discuss whether an agreement can be reached regarding the furniture item being removed from the property and excluded from the tenancy. To discuss your situation further or for information about landlord and tenant responsibilities, you can visit the Department of Building and Housing website (www.dbh.govt.nz), or call 0800 TENANCY (0800 836 262).
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