Landlord Government Leaves Little Hope For Renters

Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand

The Government’s announcement on tenancy rules prove that it does not care about renters.

“We have a Government that thinks it is running a company not a country, and treats housing as a business. Housing is a human right, and every person deserves a warm, safe and affordable home, whether they own that home or not,” says Green Party Housing spokesperson Tamatha Paul.

“Today’s announcement has made it crystal clear that this Government is not pro-tenant but pro-self interest.

“Home ownership rates in New Zealand have drastically reduced over the past three decades, with more and more children growing up in rental housing and more and more elderly New Zealanders struggling to make ends meet while paying high rents. In particular, in Aotearoa today Māori are more likely to rent than own their homes, despite being tangata whenua.

“Bringing back no-cause evictions will be a constant reminder to renters that they are at the whim of their landlord. It means constantly being on edge about whether you are secure in your home or not.

“Removing tenants’ right to renew their lease at the end of a fixed-term means that people will be moving houses every year. If we want renting to be seen as a long-term, viable option in Aotearoa, as it is in many countries with greater housing security, then we must make sure that renters can see their house as a home.

“I constantly hear horror stories about renters who have been kicked out for something as simple as putting blue tack on the walls and renters who have to pack up their whole lives and move around constantly. It completely unsettles people just trying to live their lives, and it can be distressing for children who are displaced from the communities they know and the schools they go to. The playing field is uneven and these changes to tenancy rules further tip the balance in favour of landlords.

“In New Zealand, we have a mega-landlord Prime Minister, and we have a Government made up of landlords. What we are seeing is politicians serving their own interests.

“If the Government were serious about improving things for renters, they would be building more public housing – not making it easier to kick people out,” says Tamatha Paul.

/Public Release. View in full here.