More on the Renting Process

Renting a House 

Renting is a good option for when you first move to our region as it allows you the time to get to know the city and the wide range of property types and locations available to you.

There are good legal processes in place in New Zealand to protect both tenants and landlords. Visit the Department of Building and Housing website for full information regarding tenancy information.

In summary, some of the key things to expect when renting a home are: 

  • Both the landlord and tenant must sign a tenancy agreement - this is a legal document that sets out the details of the tenancy (eg length of stay, amount of rent to be paid, amount of bond, an inspection report, etc)
  • The landlord and tenant make a joint inspection of the property and record any pre-existing damage -usually at the time of signing up the tenancy agreement.
  • When you first sign up for the property, you will need to pay an initial bond amount plus the first amount of advance rent
  • Rent is paid in advance -usually on a 2 week basis
  • Rent can only be paid weekly or fortnightly, not monthly
  • A bond is paid to the landlord - this can be no more than 4 weeks rent -  and you should be given a receipt from the landlord for the bond
  • The bond is then lodged with the Department of Building and Housing and is given back to the tenant at the end of the tenancy, so long as there is no damage to the property or any outstanding rent owed
  • There are two types of tenancy agreements: Periodic and Fixed Term
  • Periodic means that the tenancy continues until such time as either party wishes to end the tenancy (note that tenants must give 21 days notice; landlords must give 60 days notice)
  • Fixed term sets out an agreed period of time that the landlord and tenant commit to
  • As a tenant, you are responsible for paying the agreed rent and your own bills (eg electricity, telephone, etc)
  • The landlord is responsible for paying the local government rates
  • Most rental properties come unfurnished - they only come with a stove/oven. Accordingly, you will most likely need to organise your own fridge/freezer, washing machine and all other furniture.