Labour's rental plan: no more letting fees and longer notice periods

Labour Party leader Jacinda Ardern this morning set her sights out west in Auckland to reveal her party's proposed housing plans. 

Source: 1 NEWS

After mingling with Avondale market goers, Ms Ardern sat down with the Lipsham family for morning tea and a heart-to-heart on their insecure renting experiences.

Ms Ardern stated Labour's commitment to giving New Zealanders the hope, the opportunity and the connection that comes from being a home owner.

With an increase in the number of people under 40 now renting, the focus of the meeting shifted to what can be done to create a fair relationship for both tenants and landlords. 

Measures that Labour would like to put in place to increase the rights for renters include extending the notice period from the current 42 days to 90 days - Ms Ardern said this is a more reasonable amount of time for tenants to settle elsewhere. 

Termination of the 'no cause' clause and of letting fees are included in Labour's housing plans along with a limit to when landlords can increase rent in tenancy agreements.

Jacinda Ardern denies property groups claims that her promise to abolish letting fees will lead to rents going up. Source: 1 NEWS

Ardern also thought it reasonable that renters would want to make minor alterations to the house, that they feel more at home, as long as a higher bond is paid and the property returned to its original state when vacated.

In the case where tenants are difficult, Labour has proposed landlords would be able to access the tenancy tribunal in a more timely manner. 

"This really gets the balance right", Ardern said.

Having moved four times in the last three years, due to landlords wanting to move in or sell the house, Amanda and Ed Lipsham felt the moves had most impacted their two children, particularly the youngest, Nevaeh. 

Neveah, who is nine years-old, has attended four different primary schools and says "it's complicated when you have to make new friends".

Having moved so many times, the Lipshams dream of owning their own home has been "put on the back burner" and has had to become a long term goal for the family to work towards. 

To Ardern, the Lipshams are just one of the many families who would benefit from the security the proposed changes would make to New Zealand's renting market.