ACT’s stand against war on landlords welcomed

ACT’s promise to reverse this year’s Residential Tenancies Act changes and temporarily prohibit new regulations is welcome, Tenancies War spokesman Mike Butler said today.

ACT leader David Seymour said: “I’ve seen some stupid policy before but it’s hard to exaggerate the stupidity of Labour’s law changes. They’ve directly disadvantaged the very people they were trying to help. We need to stop the stampede of landlords leaving the residential tenancy market.”

Mr Butler said that rental property owners must have restored to them their property rights which includes the right to expect rent paid as agreed, the right to expect respectful behaviour, and the right to end tenancies if they so wish.

Under the current law, if a tenancy goes off the rails the owner and the Tenancy Tribunal are so tied up with red tape that issues will take months to resolve, if at all, Mr Butler said.

The regulations on insulation, heating, ventilation, and moisture would function better as guidelines rather than excuses for massive fines against landlords, he said.

The requirement for extra insulation above the 2016 requirement is not based on evidence and the only impediment to heating is not the availability of heaters, it is the cost of electricity, he said.

ACT joins the National Party in offering relief for rental property owners who have been treated as scapegoats for years, Mr Butler said.

The Green Party has promised a rental property warrant of fitness, checks on all properties before sale for health and safety, and a review of the building code for warmth and dryness.

The Greens have openly stated that they want to drive Mum and Dad landlords out of the market. They want to replace 540,000 existing private rentals with European-style apartment complexes in which tenants provide stoves, cabinets, curtains, and carpets.

Labour policy adds nothing to its changes to residential tenancy law and standards. Neither does it boast about it. Labour prefers to promise 8000 more public and transitional housing units and work on its homelessness action plan.

NZ First and New Conservatives were silent on rental property.

New Zealand’s 290,000 residential rental property owners must use their two votes in this election to defend their property rights, Mr Butler said.

Stop the War on Tenancies is a group that since October 2018 has been highlighting the failure by the Government to create sound policy and law for residential rental property.