Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


More Regulation, Less Rentals?

More Regulation, Less Rentals?

Labour has announced policy that if they were to govern they would ban letting fees to tenants amongst other initiatives to “fix” the residential rental market. It defies logic why politicians continue to propose measures that are likely to deter investors from providing much needed capacity in residential rental accommodation. In the last year alone we have seen over 10% of our landlords sell their rental properties as talk of more regulation, and taxes make headlines and returns in the sector diminish.

Banning letting fees is a step back to an overregulated economy which flies in the face of the merits observed in free market policy and is yet another beat up on landlords. If there were more rental properties available a less regulated market is far better suited to determine, at any point in time, who pays letting fees and address other issues which are ultimately driven by a lack of choice due to overall supply shortfalls in housing stock itself a symptom of long-term housing policy missteps.

There is a host of costs associated with providing a professional letting service to the standard required by legislation and insurance obligations alike. Management companies have no capacity to absorb these costs and investors will naturally look to recover any additional costs they bear through increasing rents. This is how businesses work.

We would be better placed to start talking about what incentives or policy initiatives can encourage investors before even more exit as interest rates start to climb and other costs become more real. The sector is already awash with compliance measures and there are more than adequate avenues to ensure an equitable rental market via the myriad of laws and regulations coupled with the powers invested in the Tenancy Tribunal.

The private property investor’s contribution to housing is underappreciated and their ability to invest into more homes undervalued. What we need is for politicians to recognise that private investors are integral to alleviating the shortage of quality rental housing. The current approach favours restrictive measures and increasing regulation rather than policies that encourage investors to invest in supplying more housing in an equitable and profitable environment.

Perhaps it is time to start talking about having a quality tenants register and certificate. If policy focussed on creating good tenants with the likes of a tenants Warrant of Fitness the cost to identifying good tenants would reduce, which in turn would lower the cost of re-letting a property.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The RWC, And The Op Burnham Inquiry

Testimony was given that damning evidence had been culpably ignored, lost or (deliberately?) mislaid. The systems for handling secret material from our allies were – to be charitable – only loosely observed.

Moreover… vital evidence was only belatedly made available to the inquiry, and former NZDF officers later found to be central to the events under scrutiny were strangely missing from the original witness list offered by NZDF. In short, last week’s cross-examination of the military’s former top brass demonstrated in detail that the NZDF had consistently misled its Ministers (and the wider public) for years, over the impact of our military activities in Afghanistan. More>>


Guns, Lobbying: National Has Wish List For Arms Bill

National has today outlined the 13 changes we want to see in the second tranche of gun reforms before considering our support, National’s Police spokesperson Brett Hudson says. More>>


Call For Action On Expert Panel Report: Welfare System Needs Urgent Change

If we want New Zealand to be the best place in the world to be a child, the Government needs to increase benefits, remove sanctions, individualise benefits, and fix abatement rates now, says Child Poverty Action Group and ActionStation . More>>


First Data Releases: Mixed External Report On Census Fail Mitigation

The panel endorses the statistical approaches used to mitigate non-response... However, the unprecedented use of alternative government datasets to augment census data raises questions around ethics, social licence, cultural licence, and Māori data sovereignty. More>>


Aitches: Manawatū-Whanganui Region Spelling Corrected

The Manawatu-Wanganui Region will in future be correctly spelt Manawatū-Whanganui Region. The change also means the regional council will be known as the Manawatū-Whanganui Regional Council. Horizons Regional Council is the trading name for the council. More>>

PM In Japan: Jacinda Ardern’s Remarks Following Abe Summit

Today we discussed a wide range of topics. Broadly the themes were: a deeper, high-value trade and investment relationship, greater cooperation in the Pacific; and strengthening our security partnership. More>>


Replacing All But Chair: Twyford Appoints Five NZTA Board Members

Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced the appointment of five new members to the NZ Transport Agency Board... There remain two vacancies on the NZTA Board which will be filled in due course. More>>


Climate Change: Adaptation And Risk Assessment Framework Released

“We are already experiencing the effects of a changing climate such as coastal inundation and increasingly frequent and severe droughts, floods, fires and storms. This framework is an acknowledgement that we must start adapting”, James Shaw said today. More>>


Ihumātao: Mana Whenua Reach Decision On Land

Māori King Tūheitia says mana whenua have finally reached consensus over what to do with Ihumātao - they want it back. More>>





InfoPages News Channels