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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hamilton
    Posts
    3,326

    Default Could you have to pay back all the rent, if the house is mouldy?

    Even if the tenant caused it?

    This is from Waikato Property Investor Associations facebook page today, and is very interesting. Maybe landlords celebrated the district court win a bit early!

    We have won the battle but the war isnít over (Landlords are not safe yet!)
    Landlords are celebrating too early. The win in District Court for Dunedin Landlord Vic Inglis is fantastic and a step in the right direction. It will help some other landlords in the short term but will not necessarily apply to all cases. The NZPIF information attached is very useful and you should read through this https://mandrillapp.com/track/click/...OTU3M1wiXX0ifQ
    The bigger issue is the new legislation currently going through parliament. In its current form, a provision of the new Residential Tenancies Bill is that rent can be ordered to be repaid if a property is deemed to be unlawful, as per the original interpretation under the Anderson. Landlords must ďcomply with all requirements in respect of buildings, health and safety under any enactmentĒ. But New Zealand Property Investors Federation Executive Officer Andrew King said how that was defined could be problematic. The Home Improvement Act of 1947 said there could not be mould in any property whether owned or rented. That could clear the way for tenants to demand a rent refund anytime a property became mouldy, even if they caused it themselves. This outcome is not fair or reasonable. ďIím hoping common sense will prevailĒ.
    New Zealand Property Investors Federation (NZPIF) is meeting with the new Minister of Housing, Phil Twyford, to discuss this new legislation and hope to get a fair outcome.

    Ross

    More Profit from Property? Learn How HERE.
    Ross Barnett - Coombe Smith Property Accountants
    Proud to give the best property advice for over 13 years.

  2. #2

    Default

    Might be time for a landlords strike!

    If this situation gets out of hand the PI associations around the country should coordinate a day for all their members to issue a no reason 90 day notice for every property they own with the intent of not renting the property once the tenants vacate.

    once that has been done the association then needs to be clear with the government on what changes to legislation need to be made within the 90 day period or face half the country having nowhere to live.

    the reality is that landlords provide an essential service and if they organize and collectively withdraw that service they can send a powerful message.

    now I understand that many LL's can't afford to be without the rental income so many wouldn't take that action as they see it as too risky but if there is a high risk of being forced to refund rents the risk of not having income from a property is equally high

  3. #3

    Default

    Iím on the fence, on one hand itís not hard to open the windows every day to air out the house but on the other hand sometimes thatís not enough.

    A few years back my partner and I rented a place that literally cried 24/7. We both left for work 6 am and got home 6pm, would open the windows for 20 minutes and wipe the windows with a towel every morning before leaving. Still had to clean mould off the walls periodically.

    Landlord refused to install double tongue window latches or security stays which I think would have made a huge difference.

    But I definitely think a full refund of rent is way way way overkill. My suggestion would be a notice to comply, failure to comply within x days would result in a 10% reduction in rent until thereís compliance. If all practical measures have been undertaken to solve the issue and itís still there then send the bill to the tenants because theyíre obviously useless.
    Last edited by Nzdan; 24-11-2017 at 06:22 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hamilton
    Posts
    3,326

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Don't believe the Hype View Post
    Might be time for a landlords strike!

    If this situation gets out of hand the PI associations around the country should coordinate a day for all their members to issue a no reason 90 day notice for every property they own with the intent of not renting the property once the tenants vacate.

    once that has been done the association then needs to be clear with the government on what changes to legislation need to be made within the 90 day period or face half the country having nowhere to live.

    the reality is that landlords provide an essential service and if they organize and collectively withdraw that service they can send a powerful message.

    now I understand that many LL's can't afford to be without the rental income so many wouldn't take that action as they see it as too risky but if there is a high risk of being forced to refund rents the risk of not having income from a property is equally high
    The issue is that such a small number of landlords are actually members of the Property Investment associations.

    For the NZPIF to fight efficiently and to really have some leverage with government it needs a lot more members! In my opinion its a no brainer to join your local Property Investor Association for around $260 per year, even if it is just to help NZPIF reason with the government.

    Ross
    More Profit from Property? Learn How HERE.
    Ross Barnett - Coombe Smith Property Accountants
    Proud to give the best property advice for over 13 years.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hamilton
    Posts
    3,326

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Nzdan View Post
    I’m on the fence, on one hand it’s not hard to open the windows every day to air out the house but on the other hand sometimes that’s not enough.

    A few years back my partner and I rented a place that literally cried 24/7. We both left for work 6 am and got home 6pm, would open the windows for 20 minutes and wipe the windows with a towel every morning before leaving. Still had to clean mould off the walls periodically.

    Landlord refused to install double tongue window latches or security stays which I think would have made a huge difference.

    But I definitely think a full refund of rent is way way way overkill. My suggestion would be a notice to comply, failure to comply within x days would result in a 10% reduction in rent until there’s compliance. If all practical measures have been undertaken to solve the issue and it’s still there then send the bill to the tenants because they’re obviously useless.
    The other side to this, is what if you are paying a really discounted rent? Say your property example should have had rent of $600 per week, but due to the issues you were renting for $400. Does the $200 per week discount not make up for the issues, and in a fair market both parties are agreeing to this?

    Ross
    More Profit from Property? Learn How HERE.
    Ross Barnett - Coombe Smith Property Accountants
    Proud to give the best property advice for over 13 years.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    2,272

    Default

    The 2018 census has questions about housing including mould present. Readers will not be surprised at the usual suspects who pushed for these questions to be included. Nothing to do with millions in research funding, especially if they can get the government to collect the data for them. Nice work if you can get it.

    By the by the Tenancy Services website pretty much comes down to most mould being the way tenants live. As flyernzl succinctly said - life incompetent.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    2,272

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rosco View Post
    The other side to this, is what if you are paying a really discounted rent? Say your property example should have had rent of $600 per week, but due to the issues you were renting for $400. Does the $200 per week discount not make up for the issues, and in a fair market both parties are agreeing to this?

    Ross
    Yes we have two properties that leak in very specific weather conditions 2 or 3 times a year. There is a plan to remedy. Meantime there was full disclosure to the tenants from the outset, and in the TA, decent rent discount, dehumidifier supplied and a commercial carpet dryer made available on request.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hamilton
    Posts
    3,326

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by artemis View Post
    By the by the Tenancy Services website pretty much comes down to most mould being the way tenants live. As flyernzl succinctly said - life incompetent.
    But under the new Act going through, it changes the rules and the outcome could be very different! Mould becomes unlawful under The Home Improvement Act of 1947, therefore any Mould under the new Act could cause all the rent to be due back to the Tenant.

    Ross
    More Profit from Property? Learn How HERE.
    Ross Barnett - Coombe Smith Property Accountants
    Proud to give the best property advice for over 13 years.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Tauranga
    Posts
    1,461

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rosco View Post
    But under the new Act going through, it changes the rules and the outcome could be very different! Mould becomes unlawful under The Home Improvement Act of 1947, therefore any Mould under the new Act could cause all the rent to be due back to the Tenant.

    Ross
    Well i gotta tell yous all the the more you warm the houses and seals them up in humid conditions the more mould you will get.

    Have never been busier than this last few months cleaning mouldy household items.

    Its what we do.

    Never find it in the fridge.

    Was in a very old villa just this last Thursday. White curtains been there 19 years and while grubby and dusty no mould. House has no insulation 12 ft high studs and pit sawn cladding. Client said that it can be cold sometimes in the winter but the fire soon fixes that. The house is surrounded by trees.

    Suggested they not put in any insulation just wear a jersey if they want to keep the house nice.

    This is the second house like this in the last couple of weeks. The other one had installed insulation and all her curtains and other things had gone mouldy this year.


    All these so called experts are talking through their backside. They have no idea at all.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Hastings
    Posts
    13,216

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Viking View Post
    All these so called experts are talking through their backside. They have no idea at all.
    The problem for LLs is that all those 'experts' get listened to and heeded.

    That's despite x being an unknown quantity
    and
    spurt being a drip under pressure.
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