Auckland renters threatened with more rent increases – 2017 will snap many NZers

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After promising us that house prices were ‘slowing’ (not reducing, not stopping, not deflating. but ‘slowing’) Auckland landlords are now threatening many tenants with huge rent increases.

Many renters in Auckland are barely able to make ends meet right now and rent hikes when wages are flat are the last thing Auckland’s over heated housing market needs.

Many Aucklander’s are going to be in trouble this year while landlords reap the reward of an unregulated property bubble pushed by National to keep the GDP prices inflated.

The entire city of Auckland has now been gentrified and the poorest amongst us are being forced out of the city they were born in.

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Meanwhile the flight of cash out of China will fuel another surge in prices as Chinese investors rush to get their capital out of China and into global property.

Our neoliberal property market is the problem, the National Government and landlords reaping untaxed capital gains are the only winners.

Renters need rights and they need them now.

We require new law cementing in long term tenancies with rent controls and the promotion of ‘ethical landlords’, people who refuse to squeeze every last drop of money out of their tenants for needless greed.

Our social inequality demands solutions, renters rights and affordable housing is part of that solution. Privileged arseholes like the National Party and their land owning voters represent all that is wrong with the current free market failures.

 

9 COMMENTS

  1. We’ve already had our first rent increase for the year, and I suspect we’ll have another before 2018. Every six months, almost like clockwork, we get a letter from our property manager, telling us they’re legally permitted to increase the rent, and they’ve “researched the market” and believe the increase is “fair and equitable to all parties”. It doesn’t matter if we can afford it. It doesn’t matter that our wages don’t rise by a proportionate amount every six months in order to offset the rent rise. All that matters is that they’re allowed to do it under the law, and the vaunted ‘market’ dictates the increase is acceptable.

    Now, I’m not privy to my landlord’s finances, and I’m not an accountant. However, I find it difficult to believe that unless he prises another $20 from my already meagre wage every six months, he’s going to end up bankrupt and living in miserable penury. It seems more a case of “I’m going to do it, not because I need to, but because ‘the market’ says I can.”

  2. Renters need pitchforks and lynching ropes. If you want a change of government this year, simply paint the Natzis as puppets of the Chinese dictatorship.

  3. Housing is a growing festering sore in this country.

    Everyday some mutation pops up like shoddy building materials or rampant inflation which does more damage. In 10 years time we have a whole new set of leaky homes and all that goes with that. Nick Smith was around in the 90’s with Nationals stupid blind ideology and the last cluster fuck that led to leaky homes. I am even well aware that building companies are going out of business, owing millions in this run away market, how can that be?

    So back to rentals. How about a government who does not allow housing investors to claim back tax on their “investments”. You greedy pricks who buy a house to cash in on, you pay, no one else, just you. Stop these bludgers feeding off the taxpayer.

    Then wind down rental subsidies whilst rapidly increasing government rentals. Yes I know National have done their utmost to reduce competition from the government but they’ve got months left in government, it is not too late.

    Honestly this system only works if “investors” can tap into the taxpayer’s pocket. If their tenants cannot afford to rent their flea pit then the system also breaks down.

    The thing is the more money sucked out of the economy to go down the black hole that is housing, such as higher rents, the less there is for other things and the more we all suffer. Do these landlords even pay GST?

    I am so over these white-collar beneficiaries, who have got themselves in a position of paying NO tax because of all their rebates but who love to pour scorn on those broken by the injustice that is current housing mess.

    • Bloody right XRAY,

      We are seeing greed take control of our society today, and we have no defence without a new Government change to re-balance this rip-off economy as the US is about to undergo.

  4. I think one of the best ways to bring some restraint to these greedy landlords is to start a Name-and-Shame-Campaign.

    The Daily Blog should feature a column called “Landlord Hall of Shame”, showing pictures and details of the worst landlords in Auckland, along with the addresses of the properties they rent out, so those properties can be boycotted.

    While a tiny number of landlords may take this as a badge of honour, Internet infamy is forever, and most will want to avoid this “distinction”, by not raising rents egregiously, poor maintenance, dangerous conditions, overcrowding, illegal build-outs, seizing bonds, intimidating tenants etc. Tenants will also finally have a way of getting attention to their plight.

    This tactic works like a charm. And if Newshub and the Herald can do it, I don’t see why the Daily Blog can’t do it;

    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2016/07/predatory-property-managers-renting-out-auckland-garages.html

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11138675

    Landlordism is fundamentally evil, and it is a practice that should ultimately be eliminated, along with Capitalism. Given the function of the Daily Blog as I understand it is to expose evil, creating a “Landlord Hall of Shame” column seems like an obvious social good.

    • I don’t think landlordism is fundamentally evil; there will always be people who for various reasons would prefer to rent rather than buy a property. It only becomes a problem when people are forced to rent because property prices are out of control. Fundimentally, land is, or should be regarded as, a “common”, owned communally by all of us. However we seem to have evolved as a society in which some form of private ownership is necessary, which seems to lead to a sort of ” Marxist” contradiction.

      • Hi Mikesh, thank you for your comment.

        I agree with you that land should be regarded as common. If it was regarded as common, there would be no need for either owning or renting – anyone could live where they liked, and the community would be responsible for ensuring there was always sufficient housing for everyone.

        The system of owning and renting (aka Feudalism, aka Landlordism) is a relatively recent innovation, only a few hundred years old. It was invented in Europe, and was unknown prior to that. We can easily do without it, given that we happily lived in cities for thousands of years with no notion of it.

        Not only is Landlordism completely unnecessary, it is actually highly inefficient. Capitalists like to talk about Capitalism as being more “economically efficient”. This is a fiction. Private ownership of housing and renting for profit drives up the cost of housing, but adds nothing to the real economy. Not only that, but with each owner of a property forced to pay all of its expenses and maintenance as a private individual, they pay full retail for all of their time and materials etc. This is the least efficient way known, but it is exceedingly profitable for all of the companies which sell building materials, provide private mortgages and sell real estate.

        If all of the housing of a community were owned collectively, this would produce tremendous economies of scale; the community would buy all of its materials in bulk, maintenance work would be distributed more efficiently, and costs would be dramatically reduced. We know this to be true, because that is what happens with Pharmac, and with the maintenance of State Housing stock now (when you take out the special subsidies the government provides to private operators and incentives to landlords).

        Finally, Landlordism actually is evil. How any human being can knowingly force a family with young children onto the street, or willingly participate in a system where that can occur is beyond me. You have to be a very callous creature to exploit families with children, feed off of their labour and hold the threat of homelessness over their heads if they don’t co-operate in your private profit scheme without complaining.

        Kiwi’s never used to be like this. Housing security was not a serious issue. But in the 80’s, when the government started threatening people’s pensions, they dangled the carrot of Landlordism and the “property ladder” in front of us as a “solution”. In doing so, they compromised a generation of Kiwi’s, who now depend on exploiting others less fortunate than themselves to ensure their own survival. The fact that we consider this situation “normal” is a testament to the astonishingly successful PR campaigns run by the Neo-Liberals to get us to accept this horseshit as “the way it has to be”.

        Landlordism now runs very deep in NZ, and almost every corner of society is corrupted by it. As a long-time activist who came to NZ more than 12 years ago, I never cease to be amazed at the blindspot Kiwi’s have on this issue. Many very prominent people on the NZ Left are closet landlords, living off of rents, or planning to do so when they retire. When pressed on this point, they are very well aware of the moral conflict, and they do NOT like to be reminded of how ethically compromised they are on this issue. It makes it extremely difficult to get any progress on Housing Security and Rent Control when supposedly good Marxists refuse to help with housing reform because they are in fact Landlords themselves, entirely unwilling to sacrifice their own interests for the betterment of society and the greater good of the Working Class.

        Landlordism MUST end.

  5. My wife just took a hand delivered letter from the mailbox advising of a $30 pw increase. This came a year to the day from last year’s $30 pw increase. Needless to say my income is not increasing at the same rate .
    I agree with a previous poster’s idea of naming and shaming as the average national voter thinks they’re doing nothing wrong, I know because I work with some average national voters.
    The place I live in has a broken stove and a barely working shower head and general shabbiness from age. Definitely not worth the increasing price.

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