In March 2018 we published an article under the heading: “Some Facts About Meth Testing of Rental Properties”.
Since then we have had the Gluckman report. It sent the property management industry into a spin.
Housing NZ and the Real Estate Agents Authority have adopted the level of 15 mcg/100 sq cm for their business model. But, the Tenancy Tribunal has not accepted this level. As landlords and property managers, we need to obey the law. What does this mean?
Our advice and recommendation is to test and keep on testing until the law changes. There are many who are lobbying for change but we need to make sure that our tenants’ health is protected.
We don’t want to be alarmist. Methamphetamine and other drugs are becoming an increasing problem for rental properties.
Quinovic Parnell have a policy in place to help manage this threat on behalf of our owners.
Firstly, we test 2 – 4 days before a tenancy starts. This creates a baseline for future tests.
We then include the test results as part of our tenancy agreement, and make sure the tenant signs a copy. This ensures they understand and acknowledge they were advised of the test and results.
It is the landlord’s responsibility to provide a clean, tidy and safe home for tenants. We believe testing is part of meeting this requirement under tenancy law.
If we don’t complete a test before the tenant’s arrival it can be very difficult to prove contamination was due to the current tenant.
If during a tenancy contamination is found, the house/apartment becomes uninhabitable and the tenancy ends immediately. The tenant must vacate and their tenancy agreement ends.
The tenant may apply to the Tenancy Tribunal for a refund of all rent paid if they can prove the property was contaminated before their arrival. This has occurred more than once in New Zealand.
Whilst we don’t wish to frighten anyone from being a landlord, it shows how important it is to engage the services of a professional property management company like Quinovic Parnell to ensure you meet your legal responsibilities.
If you’re looking for an expert property manager, talk to Kerry from Quinovic Property Management Parnell: