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Real Estate Industry Witnesses’ Impressive Compassion

“It’s incredibly impressive how Kiwis are dealing with the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions and uncertainty, with the real estate industry witnessing first-hand some great examples of people stepping up,” says Derryn Mayne, Owner of Century 21 New Zealand.

The real estate boss says while real estate transactions may have gone into hibernation, her company continues to experience plenty of activity including two new Century 21 franchises opening in Papatoetoe and Queenstown during March.

“Most of our Century 21 franchises have significant rental portfolios, with the property management work ongoing and in many cases, busier. Having that diversity is an incredible strength for a real estate business at a time when house sales have effectively halted,” she says.

Ms Mayne says property managers are quickly finding themselves negotiators between tenants now struggling to pay the rent while landlords continue to face a number of fixed costs, including insurance and council rates, and of course rely on the property income to meet their own cost of living.

“So many landlords are responding so positively. I’ve had a number who we work with in my own franchise offering significant rent reductions for the coming weeks, with some even offering rent free periods. It’s incredibly heartening, particularly when landlords traditionally receive a lot of unwarranted flak and they’re not getting the financial relief many think they are,” she says.

Century 21 has this week blitzed social media with an explanation of the recently announced mortgage holiday scheme and what it means for eligible landlords experiencing a drop in income due to Covid-19.

“While many can defer their mortgage payments for up to six months, this is no holiday. Landlords will continue to accrue interest, meaning over the longer term their debt will only be larger and their mortgage will take longer to repay. Once tenants understand this, they’re more willing to land at a reasonable place as they can see landlords are not getting off lightly,” she says.

Century 21’s salespeople continue to liaise with both vendors and buyers, while the principals of each franchise are regularly catching up via teleconference, with those under the Century 21 brand supported and keen to support others.

“We’re still getting enquiries and questions from prospective buyers, and we’re continually amazed at how philosophical our vendors remain, not to mention the genuine care many landlords are showing in these unsettling times.

“We’re seeing neighbours and communities coming together like never before, with the likes of groceries being dropped off at the doors of elderly. It’s an incredibly heartening time to be in real estate,” says Derryn Mayne.

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