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If you’re considering renting a home in New Zealand, there are crucial factors to consider before signing any lease agreement. Being informed can help you make the right decisions and ensure a smooth rental experience. Here are five essential things to know before renting in New Zealand:

  1. New Zealand is still a very popular destination for businesses and migration – and because of this rental properties are in high demand and can be quite expensive.  Wellington and Auckland (the 2 largest cities) have the highest rents.  You should also consider:
    • You need a car in Auckland and this needs to be factored into the costs.  There is public transport however due to Auckland’s size it is not always practical, a bus trip within Auckland can take some time!  You should also be prepared to spend time looking for a rental property plus you will need to be available for viewings throughout the day.  Most viewings are held on weekends or during working hours, and viewing is required before you can apply for a property.
    • Christchurch has one of the most stable and affordable rental markets in New Zealand. The post-earthquake rebuild has resulted in more new townhouses and apartments around the city.
    • If you are considering moving to a small town, you may need more time to find a rental property and options could be limited.

You should also note that utilities are not included in the rent and must be paid monthly direct to the supplier by the tenant (ie electricity, gas, internet, etc).

2. Once you have found your wonderful new home, you will be required to pay upfront up to 2 weeks’ rent and 4 weeks’ bond (security deposit) when signing a Tenancy Agreement. In almost all cases the first 12 months are a fixed term lease which then becomes a periodic lease. If you are in a 12 month fixed term lease you will not be able to move out early; landlords are able to increase rent once every 12 months and New Zealand law does not limit how much landlords can increase the rent by. For less than 12 months, ie 6 months or less, the best option would be a serviced apartment.

3. Landlords and Property Managers are allowed to inspect your rental property every 6 weeks, plus you will not be able to renovate, alter or add major fixtures to the property without the landlord’s consent.

4. We love our pets here in New Zealand, however unlike some countries it is VERY hard to rent in New Zealand with pets – especially dogs.

5. New Zealand is an incredibly beautiful country, however our standard of housing is different to many countries around the world. More money may be required to rent a property to the standard you may be used to, particularly in Auckland.

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