‘Entrepreneurial’ state-house Airbnb case a storm in a teacup, says housing minister

The use of Airbnb in state houses has been criticised by a National MP who says those tenants are “taking the mickey out of Housing New Zealand”.

But the Housing and Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said there was only one known case of that occurring and called the criticism “a storm in a teacup”.

National’s Social Housing spokesperson Simon O’Connor said Twyford needed to “swiftly clamp down” on state housing tenants that were renting out surplus rooms.

However, a Housing New Zealand spokesperson said that tenancy agreements could allow up to two boarders.

“The Ministry of Social Development calculates the level of rental support to our tenants on the basis of household need and income, which may include money from boarders,” he said.

Sub-letting a Housing New Zealand rental property was not permitted and this would include any instances such as Airbnb, he said.

“These instances are extremely rare, there have been a handful of such cases – two in the past year involving Airbnb, one of these very recent – and generally it comes about where the tenant is unaware of the difference between boarders and sub-letting.

“Our tenancy people work with our tenants to help them understand what is the right course of action. Both the cases were resolved with a simple meeting.”

Click here to read more.

Source: NZ Herald