Your tenancy agreement is a legal document. It tells you what you should expect from us and what we expect from you.
To help you get to know your agreement, we’ve created a video to walk you through the sign-up process.
Tenancy agreement guide
Along with the video we also created a Guide to understanding your tenancy agreement [PDF, ]
A summary of the Residential Tenancies Act
The Residential Tenancies Act is there to protect tenants and landlords, and applies to everyone involved in renting a home.
Your tenancy agreement helps us all make sure we’re meeting the requirements of the Residential Tenancies Act, and sometimes explains things like where you can park your car or if you can have a pet.
You and your Housing Support Manager, or another Kāinga Ora team member, will need to sign the Tenancy agreement before you move in. We’ll also make sure you have a copy to keep.
If we enter into a tenancy agreement with you, we will:
- make sure your home is safe and secure, and in good condition
- make sure your home meets building codes and health and safety standards
- arrange for essential repairs to be done as quickly as possible
- give you 24 hours notice before doing any planned maintenance work
- give you 48 hours notice before an annual visit.
Kāinga Ora is responsible for maintaining your property but we are not responsible for damage, fire or theft of your furniture or belongings. We recommend you arrange contents insurance to cover this.
If you feel we aren’t meeting our responsibilities, get in touch with us so we can work together to make things right.
By signing your tenancy agreement, you have the right to enjoy the peace, comfort, and privacy of your home without being unreasonably disturbed by Kāinga Ora or any other tenants and neighbours.
As a Kāinga Ora tenant, we ask that you:
- pay your rent on time
- look after your home and grounds by keeping them tidy
- let us know as soon as possible when maintenance is needed
- take responsibility for the behaviour of other people who live in or visit your home. You may be liable for any damage they cause
- respect your neighbours peace, comfort and privacy
We want to help you stay fire safe in your home. You can help us too by:
- letting us know as soon as you can if any of your smoke alarms stop working. Give us a call if your alarm is beeping for no reason - it's important smoke alarms aren't taken down or have their batteries removed, and we can help you get it sorted.
- planning a way to escape from a fire, making sure:
- escape routes are kept clear (items aren't stored in stairwells and passage ways)
- fire exit doors are free of obstacles
- smoke-control and fire-stop doors, if you have them, are kept closed.
If you lose your keys or lock yourself out of your home, feel free to arrange a locksmith yourself, but you can also call us if you need help.
We want you to be able to live well in your home, so please let us know if something isn't right. Your feedback is important to us because it helps us learn what we can do better.
There are a few different ways you can contact us and we'll do our best to get back to you within two working days.
If part of your tenancy agreement isn’t being met, but you may be able to get it sorted, we’ll ask you to fix the problem within 14 days.
If you hasn't been fixed after that, we will ask the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment for mediation. We’ll always aim to solve any problems by working with you, but if we can’t find a solution we sometimes need to go to the Tenancy Tribunal.
Sometimes things don’t quite go to plan, so let us know if you're having difficulty paying your rent. We’ll help you however we can, and may be able to offer things like:
- easier ways to pay any money you owe
- suggestions to help you with budgeting your money.
When two people don’t agree how to solve a problem, it often helps to discuss it with someone who isn’t personally involved. That’s what a mediator does – they’re trained to remain neutral and find a solution that works for everyone. For more information about mediation, contact the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment Tenancy Services(external link) on 0800 TENANCY (0800 83 62 62).
The Tenancy Tribunal
Like a mediator, the The Tenancy Tribunal hears both sides of a problem to help find a fair solution. Its decisions are legally binding, and can be used to formalise what is agreed at mediation or make a final decision if mediation doesn’t work out.
Kāinga Ora will always try to work with you first, and only make applications to the Tenancy Tribunal when things can’t be resolved another way. Applications could be made where someone:
- owe more than 21 days' rent
- has caused or threatened to cause substantial damage to their home or garden
- has assaulted or threatened to assault a Kāinga Ora staff member or neighbour
- has had 14 days' notice to do something under the tenancy agreement but hasn't done it
- has broken one or more of the terms of their tenancy agreement with us and the problem cannot be resolved
- has used or allowed their home to be used for illegal activities.
For more information about the Tenancy Tribunal, contact the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment Tenancy Services(external link) on 0800 TENANCY (0800 83 62 62).
Independent advice for tenants
We want to help you however we can, so give us a call on 0800 801 601 if you have any problems with Kāinga Ora. If you’re not happy after working with us directly, you have the right to apply for mediation or a Tenancy Tribunal hearing. It costs $20 to apply, and you can find forms and information at all Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment offices.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment(external link) also provides free advice for tenants.
Page updated: 4 July 2023