Making sense of apartment rent

Sean asks:
(updated on Friday, February 15th 2013)

I am currently renting a one-bedroom apartment in the Auckland CBD. It is fully furnished and being managed through a property management company. I moved in to the apartment at $550 per week rent. In my welcome pack, I found a letter to the owner from the property management company (I think it was put in here by mistake) dated a few days before I moved in, stating that the estimated property rent is $400 to $430 per week. So I am being charged $120 a week more than estimated. I have now received a letter stating that they are putting the rent up by another $20 a week saying they have completed a study of rents in the Auckland CBD and the apartment is currently being rented out below its market value. I am trying to make sense of this?

Our Experts Answer:

I will assume that when looking for an apartment to rent you looked at different apartments within your price range and finally concluded that this apartment was the best option available.  I would ignore the rental appraisal you have mistakenly been given a copy of and be satisfied with your original decision to take your current apartment.  If you disagree with the current market rent being $570pw then your best option would be the Tenancy Tribunal.

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