Why was a call for several months of free rent by a writer in the prestigious but now defunct Metro magazine not accompanied by a call for free food and power for everyone? Tenancies War spokesman Mike Butler said today.

Reacting to news of a mortgage holiday for homeowners, in an article published on Monday, March 27, Tess Nichol wrote “I seriously wonder how much a few months of missed rent should matter”.

Nichol understood both that banks required payment of principal and interest not paid during mortgage holidays, and that “a renter may never pay back the missed rent”.

But with a median rent of $465, a six-month rent holiday that may never be repaid would cost the owner $12,090, while rates, insurance, and taxation payments would continue.

Most of New Zealand’s 290,000 rental property owners own just one or two properties managed in conjunction with a day job which a number would have already lost as a result of the lockdown.

Why does she single out landlords? Why does she not require supermarkets to give six months free food to customers who rent their homes, six months free electricity from electricity providers to renters, six-months free petrol, and so on.

Actually, why does she single out renters?

Why not demand for everyone six-month mortgage holidays that are not repaid, as well as six months free food, electricity, and petrol for everyone?

Rental property owners tend not to speak out or fight back but this is an instance when the absurdity of the attack needs a bit of ridicule.

Stop the War on Tenancies is a group that since October 2018 has been highlighting the failures of successive governments while creating rental property policy and law.

See https://www.metromag.co.nz/city-life/city-life-property/coronavirus-covid-19-landlords-rent-holiday-strike