Being a Landlord isn’t an easy job, because there are so many regulations you must be compliant with. While most regulations are fair and have the best interest of both the Landlord and the tenant in consideration, they are rigid and non-compliance can find Landlord’s in hot water with some very significant penalty fines to pay.
To help any Northland Landlords ensure they are compliant, we thought we would list a few important regulations required by New Zealand legislation, so everyone is aware of their responsibilities.
From 1 July 2019, insulation will be compulsory in all rental homes and it must meet the New Zealand standards. You can learn more about this by clicking here. It is important to note that different regions across New Zealand have different insulation requirements. Northland is considered climate Zone 1. From July 2016, it has been compulsory that a insulation statement is provided at the start of each new tenancy including information such as; where the insulation is, what type of insulation is used and it’s thermal resistance or R-Value and it’s condition. Any tenancy that began in July 2016 or later must meet the standards and if it fails to be compliant, Landlords are liable for a penalty fine.
It is a Landlord’s responsibility to ensure compliant smoke alarms are installed and maintained. Smoke alarms in New Zealand properties must be; installed within three meters of each bedroom door or in every room where a person sleeps, in each level or story of a home, in all rental homes. The type of smoke alarm used must be; photoelectric, have a battery life of at least eight years or be hard wired, must be installed in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions and must meet international standards.
LIGHTING & VENTILATION
In accordance with the Housing Improvement Regulations 1947, lighting is the responsibility of the Landlord. Bathrooms and toilet rooms must have a window or other adequate means of ventilation. Every habitable room must have windows or other ways of letting in light and ventilation and they all must contain a form of artificial light, too.
It is the responsibility of the Landlord to provide and maintain locks so a rental property is secure, however neither the Landlord nor the tenant can remove add to or alter any locking device in a rental property without the consent of the other. If a Landlord installs a security alarm system, it is their responsibility to maintain it unless it was requested by the tenant, in which case it is the tenant’s responsibility.
There are a number of regulations around increasing the rent on a rental property to ensure a tenant is treated fairly. A Landlord can only increase rent after 180 days of the tenancy and provided the increase is not within 180 days of the last increase. A Landlord must give a tenant no less than 60-days notice and must provide written notice. This should include the new rental amount and the first day that amount is payable.
Don’t forget that our friendly Property Management team is a phone call away if you need any assistance in managing your rental property. With different packages designed to suit the needs of different Landlords, we have a solution for everyone.