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Possible Issue with landlord sexual descrimination

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  • Possible Issue with landlord sexual descrimination

    This has been edited to comment that the 4 weeks arrears is not the case at all. The rental is $300 a week and confirmed printout by the landlord shows they are only $756 in arrears. Bare in mind 4 days ago the landlord contacted them and said they were $2,700 in arrears, then it changed to $1,256 and when he left a printout this morning in the letter box they worked it out to only $756 in arrears. This was Edited to include this update on: 2nd Nov 2012 at 4.38pm

    I really agree with these tenants it is obviously personal and strongly points now towards the sexual orientation issues they first stated about.

    ************************************************** ************************************************** **

    Hey people, I am new so please bare with me.

    A friend of mine is having issues with their landlord over a fixed term tenancy. They moved into a property and signed a 3 year fixed term lease and during the past few weeks fell 4 weeks behind in rent due to serious personal reasons. They are getting the arrears sorted by seeking financial help from Work and Income however the landlord surprised them by turning up at the property and made them sign a new Tenancy Agreement which has a term of 3 month lease instead of the three years.

    The property is a Two Bedroom Apartment with a shop at the front which they were leasing to start a new business venture.

    There are other factors into why this landlord may have done this, one being he found out they were a gay couple, he expressed to them he did not approve of that life style and commented he was is an awkward situation as people had raised concerns about his religious beliefs and aligning himself with people that are gay. This landlord did not come out and state the reason the tenancy change was due to that fact, but he gave no reason at all at the time the new tenancy agreement was signed.

    The landlord proceeded to inform the tenants that he did not believe in Adam and Steve. They now feel very uncomfortable living there, it has been determined that this landlord has also been discussing private details about these Tenants with other people and they feel very humiliated and upset due to the fact the landlord made them feel like there was something wrong with them being gay.

    There is another side to this story too regarding the business venture, the landlord had verbally agreed to invest $1500 in
    this venture as he saw the potential it had and basically wanted a share of the business. Prior to the landlord finding out about the sexuality issue he was dead set keen to give them $1500 to help them get the business started.

    He has now come back to them after they expressed they were not happy about the Sexuality issue being discussed in the manner it was and now this landlord is refusing to put the $1500 into the business. Its a pretty sour feeling they have, they do feel they have been discriminated against and as a result their Tenancy and investment is being thrown out the window.

    They contact the landlord today who refused to speak with them and had an agent on his behalf explain it was not down to the fact of being Gay and he made the decision of changing the tenancy term because of the rental arrears. We clearly think this is not the case but where do they stand. They are a very nice couple, working hard to get their business going and to have some landlord that has over 100 properties around New Zealand insinuate their life style is unacceptable they have been left feeling like total and utter crap.

    Where would they stand in respects to who they should contact for help, I do not want them to be walked over especially when this particular landlord has disclosed to them he has multiple companies setup to avoid GST & Tax payments on his rentals they just feel like they have been walked over and can do nothing about it.

    Can we get some honest advise or help please?
    Last edited by Grantnz; 02-11-2012, 04:40 PM.

  • #2
    Bare with you - freudian slip?

    Unfortunately there's not much they can do in terms of proving this moron's homophobia. Did they sign the new contract? Can they survive in the business without his investment? Can they get the payments back on track?

    Comment


    • #3
      are they up to date on the rent?

      seems that would be the best place to start

      otherwise their complaints look retaliatory...
      have you defeated them?
      your demons

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Liberall & Eri

        They have come to an agreement with the arrears yes, sorry just speaking to them on the phone now. Yes they did sign the new contract but did not notice the time frame to begin with and alerted the landlord they did not agree with the time frame being cut down.

        In respects to proving the landlords comments about the sexuality side of things there were 3 others in the room which heard it, one being the main tenant on the application, his partner and a new land agent woman working for the landlord. She is the one that called today explaining that she thinks the comment came out the wrong way and just made excuses for the landlord.

        In respects to the investment no they cannot get it anywhere else at this stage, however even while they were in arrears the landlord had verbally agreed to loan this $1500 knowing the arrears was still owing. He made it very clear what was holding him back investing now was his moral thoughts of entering into business with a homosexual and what others may think.

        Comment


        • #5
          Sorry the lady acting on behalf of the landlord today also commented that en-light of the email the tenants sent the landlord complaining about the sexual comments she felt the landlord should no longer invest or loan the money.

          Comment


          • #6
            Im sorry but even if that was my brother and sister ill do the same, it ends at money.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Glizzle View Post
              Im sorry but even if that was my brother and sister ill do the same, it ends at money.
              Not sure what you mean sorry

              Comment


              • #8
                What mess would they be in if he holds them to 3 years?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Glizzle View Post
                  What mess would they be in if he holds them to 3 years?
                  They wouldn't. It was due to a personal circumstance of death which lead to the arrears. And he did not seem overly worried about the arrears when offering to invest and help the business get off the ground.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    One for Keys (experienced PM on PT), but I suspect that the second lease cannot override the first one if the first one has not been cancelled by the tenancy tribunal.
                    DFTBA

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thats great and im sorry but what sane person would sign a aggreement on the spot, they were behide on money yes,but what was changed in this aggrement for then to sign it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by cube View Post
                        One for Keys (experienced PM on PT), but I suspect that the second lease cannot override the first one if the first one has not been cancelled by the tenancy tribunal.
                        Thanks for the info Cube, what are you refering to in respects to One for keys (experienced PM on PT)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Glizzle View Post
                          Thats great and im sorry but what sane person would sign a aggreement on the spot, they were behide on money yes,but what was changed in this aggrement for then to sign it.
                          Hi, someone who does not know the law and felt they had no other option but to sign it.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            They would have a strong case to argue that the second TA is invalid and that the first one stands.

                            Is this a commercial lease or a residential?
                            If commercial (ie no one living on the premises and the shop apartment being used for business purposes) then the RTA does not apply.

                            If residential, the Landlord missed his chance when they were 4 weeks in arrears. If he'd really wanted them out he could have filed a 21 days rent arrears claim for immediate termination of the TA once it got to three weeks.

                            The business investment aspect of the situation is irrelevant to the tenancy.
                            Last edited by flyernzl; 01-11-2012, 09:40 PM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Interesting. The first agreement is the one which holds water and is enforceable provided it is a residential tenancy. There is a grey area because of the type of property.

                              Was a bond taken? Lodged with the Department of Building and Housing? Was the tenancy signed on a standard building and housing tenancy form? If the answers to these questions are yes then the landlord has accepted that it is a residential tenancy and the RTA applies. Specifically Section 11. The original tenancy agreement for three years holds both parties.
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