TODAY |

Tenant who says landlord hiked rent after pulling out parsley, painting fence welcomes rental law shakeup

This story was first published on Monday August 27.

Nearly 600,000 households are estimated to live in rental homes. Source: 1 NEWS

A young woman renting a home in Wellington says she has had several difficult renting experiences as the Government looks to clamp down on exploitative landlords in New Zealand.

Ruby Gray, 25, says a recent rent hike appeared unfair to her.

"All the landlord did was take out some parsley and paint the fence around the back and they were like, 160 bucks we're putting it up," Ms Gray told 1 NEWS.

The Government says bad landlords are a minority but admits our renting laws are archaic.

"We want to make life better for renters because at the moment it's a miserable and pretty punishing existence for many of them, it's got to be better than this," Housing Minister Phil Twyford says.

Proposed new laws around rental properties by the Government include rent increases limited to one a year, more relaxed rules around pets and 90 days notice for termination.

The new rules are seen as a step in the right direction by renter Ms Gray.

"It just means that you feel a little bit safer going into a deal, you feel like the rug's not going to be pulled out," she said.

However, critics in the opposition say the new laws will just hike rents and put people off becoming landlords.

"It's much better if we encourage landlords into the market because of course that means more supply for renters, more choice for renters, and it means it keeps down the cost of renting," National MP Judith Collins said.

The proposed changes are out for consultation and the Government aims to have them in place by 2020.