Tenant Rights and Obligations

When renting a property, what are the tenant's rights and responsibilities?

1. Before signing the lease agreement, ensure that you understand it. 

There are multiple aspects in lease agreements that you will need to be aware of; once signed, you will be legally bound to the tenancy agreement.

  • Check the contract carefully. Feel free to ask your Property Manager if anything is unclear.
  • Ensure that you understand the outlined rights stipulated in the agreement. Feel free to ask your Property Manager if anything is unclear.
  • Be sure to keep a copy of your lease agreement.

2. Do your walkthrough of the property, and be thorough. 

It's imperative that you note things that will require repairs so that attention can be paid to these promptly. Handy checks include:

  • Lights - Check all lights, including those outside, to ensure that they all work.
  • Open taps to ensure that these all work as expected. Remember to check showers and baths too.
  • Test appliances by turning these on and off.
  • Check power outlets.
  • Open and close windows, doors and gates, testing locks where present too.
  • Toilets - flush these to check that everything is working as expected
  • Turn lights in and around the property on and off to test that everything is in working order.

3. Damage? Record it!

All assessed damage will need to be noted down into your copy of the entry inspection report. Be sure to include details outlining mould, moisture, spots and dirt wherever noted throughout the property, as these are important. Take photos of everything so that you will have a time-stamped record handy. You will need to return your copy to your Property Manager before you move in.

4. Are you insured?

Your landlord's insurance policy doesn't protect your belongings. Under the Residential Tenancies Act, tenants are liable for any damage they or their invited guests cause intentionally or carelessly. We recommend that you have the following insurance:

  • A Household Contents or Renters Insurance policy to protect your personal belongings
  • A Personal Liability policy to protect you from any careless damage you or your invited guests may cause to the property

The landlord's insurance details for the property you are renting are included under the Insurance details section of your tenancy agreement.

If you need assistance or advice regarding insurance, please talk to an insurance adviser or your insurance company.

Tenant's should:

  • Pay the rent on time
  • Use the premises principally for residential purpose
  • Keep the premises reasonably clean and tidy
  • Notify the owner as soon as possible of any damage to the premises or the need for any repair

Tenant's should not:

  • Intentionally or carelessly damage, or permit any other person to damage, the premises; or
  • Cause or permit any interference with, or render inoperative, any means of escape from fire within the meaning of the Building Act 2004; or
  • Use the premises, or permit the premises to be used, for any unlawful purpose; or
  • Cause or permit any interference with the reasonable peace, comfort, or privacy of any of the owner’s other tenants in the use of the premises occupied by those other tenants, or with the reasonable peace, comfort, or privacy of any other person residing in the neighbourhood.
  • Where the Tenancy Agreement specifies a maximum number of persons that may ordinarily reside in the premises during the tenancy, the tenants shall ensure that no more than that number will ordinarily reside in the premises at any time during the tenancy.

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