Residential Tenancies under Lockdown
The key points:
– There is now a freeze on rent increases for six months.
– Landlords cannot terminate tenancies during the lockdown (for three months) unless the parties agree.
– Tenants can still terminate their tenancy as normal.
– Tenants can revoke termination notices they have already given if they need to stay there during lockdown.
– After the initial periods, the Government will re-evaluate.
Importantly, where a tenant has symptoms of COVID-19, or is confirmed positive, the landlord cannot terminate the tenancy. Nor is the tenant required to notify the landlord if they test positive.
We encourage tenants and landlords to communicate. Perhaps the landlord needs to attend the property while the tenant is self-isolating, or the landlord needs to undertake urgent repairs at the property, for example.
Watch this space though as other measures, including mortgage relief and moves afoot by tenant groups to force landlords to stop charging rent during lockdown, may change things.
For further information please visit:
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Development COVID-19 information page
The Minister’s announcement on the Beehive website
Or contact Queenstown Law: firstname.lastname@example.org