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Labour says landlords are 'scaremongering'

Newshub logoNewshub 14/09/2017 Emma Hurley

© Provided by MediaWorks NZ Limited

A landlord lobby group says rents will go up under a Labour government, but Labour's dismissed it as "self-centred scaremongering".

The Property Investors' Federation (NZPIF) surveyed its members, and found that a majority of the 816 respondents said they'd rise rents if Labour implemented its housing policies.

A Labour government would extend the existing brightline test to five years, which taxes profits on the sale of properties other than the family home. 

They'd give renters more rights under tenancy agreements including banning letting fees, and would introduce new 'healthy home' standards. 

Labour would also remove the ability of landlords to claim losses from rental properties against other income (also known as 'negative gearing').

Almost three-quarters of respondents to the NZPIF survey said they'd increase rental prices, with 54.8 percent saying they'd raise rents between $20 and $40 per week and 12.8 percent saying they'd raise rents by more than $40 per week.

Labour's housing spokesperson Phil Twyford has slammed the lobby group, saying he's "tired of self-serving scaremongering" from the NZPIF.

"Four-hundred and fifty thousand Kiwi households are renters and it's time to stop treating them as second-class citizens."

Mr Twyford said the current rental laws are "archaic" and many tenants "live in constant fear of being kicked out".

He said Labour's housing policies are more likely to stabilise rent prices or see them fall "by increasing the supply of affordable housing and reigning in property speculation".

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