From 11 February 2021, the requirement for landlords to keep records has been extended to include documents related to both the tenancy and property.
What documents do landlords need to retain to ensure that they are meeting the new requirements?
Landlords need to keep the following documents during the tenancy and for 12 months after the tenancy ends:
Information relating to the tenancy:
- The tenancy agreement and any variations or renewals
- Records of inspections carried out by or for the landlord
- Any advertisement for the tenancy
- Notices or correspondence between a landlord and a tenant or prospective tenant in relation to the tenancy.
If the landlord does work on the property:
- Building work - Records of building work that required a building consent e.g., the Code Compliance Certificate
- Electrical work - Records of prescribed electrical work e.g., the Certificate of Compliance
- Gas fitting work - Records of gas fitting work e.g., the Certificate of Compliance
- Plumbing work - Records of sanitary plumbing work e.g., documents the plumber provided such as invoices or a description of the work
- AND any other records of maintenance or repairs carried out at the property
- AND reports or assessments by a professional tradesperson of work that is carried out or is required that relates to the landlord’s compliance with section 45 or 66I*
- Information relating to the healthy homes standards - Records or other documents that relate to the landlord’s compliance with the healthy homes standards.
Have landlords committed an unlawful act if they don’t have some of the new documents that they are required to retain under the new rules?
If the landlord does not have the documents when the law came into effect, then they have not committed an unlawful act. Landlords only have to retain documents produced after the law came into effect, on or after 11 February 2021. Landlords do not have to create documents if they do not exist.
Warranties on appliances such as heat pumps may be conditional upon the owner conducting regular maintenance of the air conditioner. As landlords meet their obligations under the healthy homes standards, they will need to ensure that regular maintenance such as annual servicing occurs or a warranty may be void. Harcourts property managers can arrange for regular servicing of appliances on your behalf.
Your Harcourts property manager has robust systems in place to ensure that all documentation relating to a tenancy and property are collected and stored in secure systems. This ensures that our landlords meet their obligations under the Act, and if or when required, these documents can be provided to the Regulator upon request.
*These obligations relate to providing and maintaining the premises in a reasonable state of repair and complying with all relevant legal requirements in relation to buildings, health and safety e.g., making sure the landlord has a building consent if needed to carry out building work
These articles were featured in Harcourts Property Management Focus, Issue 6 2021.