Tenancy Expert

Ask Jennifer Sykes, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment questions relating to tenants and landlords

The Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment provides information and guidance on building law and compliance, services including weathertight homes, and advice for tenants and landlords.

Natasha asks:

Just wondering if a tenancy rehearing has been dismissed for the wrong reason can I reapply again?


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Excessive break fees

Len asks:

I am renting a flat in Christchurch and have been renting my own home out to my daughter and grand daughter. My daughter has now bought her own home and I will return to my home shortly. When I signed the rental agreement with the agency earlier this year it was for a fixed one year tenancy. I was quoted on paper that the breaking tenancy fee was $310. Now that I am breaking the tenancy I am told the fee is $653, which is a massive increase. Do I have any civil redress here?

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Abusive flat-share

Mark asks:

I have a person on the same property as me staying in a self-contained sleep out adjacent to the three bedroom house I am in. I agreed to let them stay in it but there was only ever a verbal agreement for living arrangements and conditions. I have a signed tenancy agreement with the owner of the property but they have not.

Due to circumstances over the last two months I decided to give them a written agreement. They verbally abused me, said that it wasn't a legal document and told me to go away. After one week of harassing me they signed. But within two hours they had broken parts of the agreement. When I questioned this, they told me to get off their property or they would ring the Police. I have given them four weeks’ notice to leave as agreed verbally and written. But they refuse to communicate and just threaten to call the Police. Could you please tell me what rights I might have or what I can do?




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