How Labour is backing renters

We’ve worked hard to make life easier for renters, and ensure everyone has a healthy, secure place to live.

More Kiwis than ever are now renting, including families with young children and older New Zealanders. But when we came into Government, New Zealand’s rental laws were out of date and didn’t reflect our changing society.

Over the past three years, we’ve put in place a range of practical policies to turn this around, and make a real difference for Kiwi families.

Here’s how we’re backing renters:

We’ve limited rent increases to once a year.

We’ve changed the law so landlords can only raise the rent once a year. We’ve also banned rental bidding, stopping landlords from asking prospective tenants for higher rent payments in order to secure a home. Together, these changes will help keep costs down for renting families.

We’re making sure all rental homes are healthy.

Your home shouldn’t make you sick. We’ve introduced new rules for rental properties to ensure everyone has a warm, dry place to live. Landlords will soon have to ensure their properties comply with heating, insulation, ventilation, moisture and draught standards, so they’re healthy homes for tenants.

We’ve banned unfair letting fees.

Letting agents and landlords used to be able to charge tenants a fee, usually a week's rent, when renting out a home. This created an extra cost for families on top of all the other costs people face when moving. We’ve banned these unfair letting fees, making life easier for renters.

We’ve made renting fairer.

We brought New Zealand’s rental laws into the 21st century to make renting fairer for Kiwi families. We’re making rental properties safer and more liveable by enabling tenants to make minor changes to their homes, like when quake-proofing. We’ve also increased financial penalties and introduced new tools to help ensure landlords and tenants are meeting their obligations.

We’ve stopped no-cause terminations.

As part of our update to the Residential Tenancies Act, we’ve removed landlords’ ability to kick out their tenants without giving them a reason. This will give renting families more security, and allow them to put down roots in their community.


These are just some of the ways we’re making life easier for Kiwi families. However, we know there’s more to do, and we’re continuing our work to improve renting in New Zealand, as part of our ongoing housing programme. You can read more about everything we’re doing in housing here.

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