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Call for regulation of property managers grows louder

Call for regulation of property managers grows louder with open letter from advocates and industry

Ministers Phil Twyford, Andrew Little and Aupito William Sio have been sent an open letter signed by 26 advocacy organisations and property management professionals, calling for regulation of the industry.

The letter was delivered by Anglican Advocacy, whose recent report ‘A Decade Overdue: The need for regulation of property management in New Zealand’ details evidence that a lack of regulation is causing a wide range of issues for consumers.

Signatories include Community Law Centres of Aotearoa; the Tenants Protection Association; the New Zealand Union of Students Associations; the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ); the Leading Property Managers Association (LPMA - NZ); and a number of property management companies, both big and small.

The letter requests that the Government require property managers to obtain qualifications and a licence in order to operate; follow a professional code of conduct; and handle all tenancy-related funds through a trust account. It also calls for an effective complaints procedure that protects complainants.

Jolyon White, Director of Anglican Advocacy, says there are a number of ways that regulation could be achieved, but the important thing was to get something underway as soon as possible.

“Property managers have been left unregulated for more than a decade, and it’s high time the Government put things right.” Says Mr. White.

“A lack of regulation is causing harm to tenants and landlords alike, as well as to all the property managers out there who are striving to operate ethically and professionally.”

“Property managers have access into people’s homes, and handle billions of dollars worth of assets. It is unacceptable that they are not currently required to have a licence or any form of accreditation. We look forward to hearing from the Government about how they plan to address this.”

“The variety of signatories to this letter, as well as recent advice from Select Committee for the Prohibiting Letting Fees Bill, gives the Government a strong mandate to act. We’d like to see a commitment to have legislation introduced to Parliament by this time next year.”

“We look forward to hearing from the Government about how they plan to address this.”

The open letter can be viewed online at www.anglicanadvocacy.org.nz/projects/property-management

ENDS

Supporting statement from REINZ

Bindi Norwell, Chief Executive at REINZ says: “The opportunity to make a significant difference to the lives of renters doesn’t come along every day. So, as we have done for the last 10 years, today we’re again calling for the government to regulate the property management industry to ensure there is clarity, transparency and equity on all sides of the equation. Therefore, we unequivocally stand by Anglican Advocacy’s call today to regulate the property management industry, as this is well overdue.

“With the high level of responsibility that property managers have, with individuals holding keys, collecting rent money, bonds, personal information and more, regulating the industry will ensure there are adequate consumer protections in place. It will also improve transparency and provide clear guidelines and expectations for the industry.”

ENDS


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