Parasite landlords rip off students

student accommodation

Student accommodation: expensive, and hard to come by

by Shomi Yoon

As the academic year starts for tens of thousands of university students, the frenzy of looking for accommodation begins again.

This time however, it’s worse than any year before. There is a shortage of rentals. Trade Me reported a drop in availability of 70% in December 2017. Landlords are milking this woeful supply situation by increasing rent. In the past few months, rents have gone up in Wellington by an average of around $30 per week. And there’s predictions that rent will rise further once the academic year starts.

It’s hard for everyone. Spare a thought for solo mothers looking for places with their children, and Māori and Pasifika students facing landlords’ racism and discrimination as they search for flats.

Since January 2018, Finance Minister Grant Robertson has had a flood of complaints from students complaining about their landlord who have gobbled up the $50 increase of the accommodation supplement with a hike in rent.

The median rent is $460 per week nationally, with Auckland copping the worst of it with a median of $530. [Read More…]

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