Deck collapses 9 Hurt Are your rental properties safe

Posted on Friday, June 6 2014

I watched the news in horror as 9 people were injured  were staying at a holiday let in Omaha just north of Auckland. The owner was quick to point out she had had a builder look over the decks in the last few years and although one deck had been closed off and marked as unsafe this one that collapsed was deemed ok for use by tenants. It’s very important for landlords to note recent changes to the Residential Tenancies Act include “Unlawful Acts: A new list of “unlawful acts” with specific fines has been added.

Landlords may be fined up to $3,000 if they fail to provide the property in a reasonably clean state or fail to carry out maintenance or building and health and safety requirements” This means it is no longer acceptable for landlords to not carry out maintenance to rental properties or take reasonable measures to ensure that their properties are safe for tenants and or anyone in those properties. Now we are all in business as property investors and every business has costs and no business likes costs but having seen rental properties where children have fallen through decks, through bannister rails, walked through glass sliding doors or had them shatter on top of them as the door failed to slide, tenants fall through the front step as they are putting keys in their door, I welcome the new changes and hope that they are enforced wherever possible.

I’m sure we haven’t heard the last of the Omaha issue as the police and Auckland City Council are also involved now. This is a real wake up call for landlords both with full time tenants and holiday rentals to realise that they have a responsibility as business owners and providers of accommodation.

Mark Trafford

Director
Maintain To Profit

Websites: www.maintaintoprofit.co.nz

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