New Zealand Law Society - Passage of Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill recommended

Passage of Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill recommended

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The Governance and Administration select committee has released a report on the Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill (No 2) with a recommendation that it be passed.

The bill proposes changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986. These would cover liability for damage to rental premises caused by a tenant, tenancies over rental premises that are unlawful for residential use, and contamination of rental premises.

Among the changes recommended by the committee are a requirement for landlords to include information about the insurance of a premises in a tenancy agreement. This would include a written statement specifying whether or not the premises were insured, and if they were, the amount of excess, relevant risks insured against, and what acts or omissions of the tenant would make insurance monies under the policy irrecoverable.

The committee also recommends replacing references to "methamphetamine" in Part 2 with "contaminant". It says limiting the bill's coverage to just methamphetamine contamination would miss an opportunity to address contamination by other substances.

Another amendment would require landlords who test for contaminants to state the contaminants they will be testing for. Landlords would also be required to notify tenants of the results of the tests in writing, and provide them with a copy of the results.

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