Short term accommodation bonds

Question from Thelma updated on 12th June 2017:

Through Holiday Homes on line I booked holiday accommodation for nine nights at $265.00 a night. It was confirmed and half the total was required as deposit which I duly paid $1192.50. No bond was mentioned or asked for.

Now we are due to head for our holiday and the owner is asking for the final payment (which I am happy to pay) - but also a $400 refundable bond! I have concerns about paying this bond, as there are no check or out, key left under the mat and neighbor contact is next door. It is only going to be his word against mine re any damage and I may never see my bond money!

What is the standing in these situations please? I run my own rental properties and the bond always goes to the tenancy tribunal. It all seems a very untidy situation, but easy money if they chose not to refund if I do pay.




Our expert Allan Galloway responded:

The Residential Tenancies Act applies to every tenancy for residential purposes. However, there are some exceptions. Short-term accommodation let for holiday purposes, motels, hotels, backpackers and camping grounds are examples of accommodation that is not covered by the Act. This is because the premises are not where the occupants normally live.

Any issues that arise from the hiring of a holiday home may be dealt with by the Disputes Tribunal at the District Court. Contact them for more information about their dispute resolution process. You may also find it helpful to contact Holiday Homes directly and check any of the terms and conditions that apply to the holiday homes booked via their services.


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.

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