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Push Pause On Tenancy Law Reform

Landlords are calling for the Government’s proposed tenancy law reforms to be put on hold until after the Covid-19 crisis.

By: Tatjana Day

28 March 2022

Tenancies War spokesman Mike Butler says the Government should not push through its “radical changes” to tenancy law under the cover of the Covid-19 scare.

“Not only do the measures penalise New Zealand’s 290,000 private landlords, many of whom might consequently sell, but they will immediately make it tougher for around one million renters.”

That’s because fewer private rental properties will increase demand and raise rents further, getting rid of threatening, anti-social neighbours will take at least three months, and it will be harder for tenants with a tarnished credit or rental history to get a private rental property

The Government should put the legislation on hold but, in the meantime, it was critical for landlords to speak out, he says.

There was some political support for halting the progress of the tenancy law reforms in the form of ACT leader David Seymour.

He said that the Government should delay by 12 months the introduction of any non-Covid-19-related regulations – including its tenancy law reforms.

Seymour said this should be done to reduce the anti-growth impacts of regulation and to avoid adding to the cost and uncertainty of doing business.

But while NZ Property Investors’ Federation executive officer Sharon Cullwick also hopes the Government might push pause on the tenancy law reform, she’s isn’t convinced they will.

The NZPIF wants all landlords, and others, behind them in the battle against the planned reforms, she says.

“It’s hugely important as they will have a major impact on people, and not just landlords.”

To this end, the NZPIF launched a petition against the reforms mid-March. At the time of going to print, over 7,000 people had signed it.

Cullwick is urging anybody who is concerned about the reforms to speak up and to sign the petition before the NZPIF’s Select Committee hearing - which is currently scheduled for June - as submissions on the legislation closed on March 25. ■


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