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REINZ Welcomes Tenancy Services Delivery Changes

REINZ Welcomes Changes to Delivery of Tenancy Services

The Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) today welcomed changes announced by the Department of Building and Housing's Tenancy Services Division to enhance services for both tenants and landlords.

Mr Howard Morley, REINZ National President, said "The changes follow extensive consultation with the Institute and tenants' organisations over the past 12 months. We will see improved access to the Department's tenancy services, particularly in provincial areas, and also lower transaction costs."

Professional property management is an area of growing importance for the Institute's members given the growth in the number of New Zealanders living in rental accommodation on the back of a long term trend of falling home ownership.

Key changes will include an extension of hours to 5.30 p.m. of the 0800 free phone service offering information and advice on renting law to meet client demand; a phone mediation service with a qualified mediator to resolve simple disputes, where appropriate, within 24 hours of making an application to the Tribunal; and regular visits by professional mediators to a number of provincial communities that are currently not serviced by Tenancy Services.

REINZ also welcomes the intention to provide an increased range of internet services enabling landlords and property managers to access and complete a Tenancy Tribunal application online 24 hours a day and pay online by credit card. Currently applications may must be paid obtained from Tenancy Services offices with payment made either through Westpac Bank or by purchasing prepaid stickers. Eftpos at some locations.

Another change will enable Tenancy Service's customers to make an appointment for specialist advice or mediation as they would for any other professional service, ensuring they aren't kept waiting and can see a specialist at a time that suited them.

"The Institute believes these changes will result in the delivery of a more timely and efficient service to a greater number of communities, saving customers time and money. I understand that, when they are implemented, Tenancy Services will be equipped to connect with increased numbers of more than 60 centres throughout New Zealand.

"We appreciated the opportunity to be involved in the design of the new service delivery changes and believe they will ensure a more consistent service throughout the country. In addition, the changes will lower the costs incurred by not requiring people to have to take time out of their business and travel when resolving tenancy disputes," Mr Morley said.

ENDS

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