Renting for the first time can be an incredibly stressful and time-consuming process. Here are our answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about renting a property.
How do I apply for a rental property?
To rent a property in New Zealand, you must be 18 years old, present a valid form of photo ID, and adhere to all the clauses in your rental agreement. You can fill out a quick and easy rental application form on the Rotorua Rentals website.
The landlord or property manager is legally allowed to ask you for a credit check or a guarantor. A guarantor gives the owner of the property a sense of security because if you fail to pay rent, the debt will transfer to your guarantor. Having a guarantor is a great way to boost your appeal as a tenant.
Once you have your tenancy agreement, read it carefully and thoroughly. If you are signing the property agreement alone – regardless of whether you have flat mates or not – you are solely legally responsible.
What are the different types of tenancy agreements?
There are two types of tenancy agreements: fixed-term tenancy agreements and periodic tenancy agreements. A fixed-term tenancy agreement is for a set period and cannot be terminated prior to the end date. The only exceptions to this are if your landlord or property manager agrees to end the tenancy, or if you experience unforeseen changes in your circumstances. A periodic tenancy agreement has a start date but no fixed end date. You need to give at least 21 days’ notice to end your tenancy, however your landlord or property manager will have to give you at least 42 days’ notice. The 42 day term applies if the owners of the home wish to move back in or if they have sold the property unconditionally. If the owners require you to end your tenancy for any other reason, they must give you 90 days’ notice.
How much bond and rent do I have to pay?
Your landlord or property manager are legally allowed to ask for four weeks rent payment as bond. This will be refunded to you at the end of your tenancy if you have complied with all the terms of your tenancy agreement. This includes leaving the house clean and not causing any damage during your tenancy.
Rent will be stated on the tenancy agreement, and landlords or property managers can legally ask you for two weeks of rent in advance. If you are renting as a couple or a group, it is preferred that you set up a joint account which you can pay rent with. This makes it easier to keep track of your rent payments and prevents any confusion. If your rent becomes overdue by 21 days, you may have to attend a Tenancy Tribunal hearing and you could potentially be evicted.
What if the property or my belongings are damaged during my tenancy?
Tenants are very rarely covered by their landlord’s insurance. It is in your best interest to get contents insurance as a renter to cover yourself if there is a theft or fire.
You will also receive an initial property inspection report prior to the start of your tenancy. This will outline any damage to the house itself or the furniture or appliances that are remaining there throughout your tenancy. It is recommended to take photos of any damage you find on the property when you first move into the home. You are legally responsible for damages done to the property by yourself or by any other person you allow onto the property.
You are responsible for reporting any maintenance or repairs that need to be done to the landlord or property manager as well as communicating whether the repairs are urgent or not. If you rent a property through Rotorua Rentals, this process simple and easy. All you need to do is submit a maintenance request through our website.
When will I receive a property inspection?
Property inspections can happen at any time, however, the property manager or landlord is required to give you at least 48 hours’ notice. They legally cannot enter the property without giving you sufficient notice, unless in the event of an emergency.
Inspections cannot occur more frequently than once every 4 weeks.
What happens when I want to move out?
If you are wanting to end a fixed-term tenancy for any reason, you need approval from the landlord or property manager. This process differs on a case-by-case basis, and requires a lot of communication. For example, even if you know somebody who wants to move into the property, they will still need to complete the rental process. Whether you are wanting to move out early or are at the end of your tenancy agreement, you are also expected to leave the property in a clean and tidy condition. Keep your receipts if you have any professional cleaning done and ensure you have evidence if you are disputing a damage claim.
Got another question?
At Rotorua Rentals, we aim to make the process as easy as possible for both renters and landlords. If you have any more questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our team of experts. We are always happy to help.