Separate self-contained dwelling

Evan asks:
(updated on Friday, March 23rd 2012)

I have recently purchased a six-bedroom house. On part of the first floor is a two bedroom area (separate from the main house). It has its own shower, kitchen, living area, washing machine and carport. I am looking to tenant it fully furnished including power. Are there any regulations or legal issues to be aware of if I pursue this option?

Our Experts Answer:

There are a number of considerations before renting out a separate area of a house as a standalone residential unit. It is important to check you have planning permission, by way of a previous approved planning permit or resource consent or council confirmed existing use rights. On occasions these sorts of units were either construed illegally or have morphed out of a rumpus room or pool house. Therefore building consent issues relating to fire and other matters need to be confirmed with council, as often ovens have been wired up to the second unit without electrical certification. This gives rise to insurance. Is your insurance company aware that there are two units being rented out on the property?

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