MediaMade possible by

The very best of Rent Week on The Spinoff

Compiling the best reading from your friendly local website, featuring a lot of rent week and Hit and Run.

A Landlord: I’m a landlord – but the negligence and greed of other landlords makes me ashamed to admit it

“And lucky, lucky us. It has cost us nothing, not a red cent of our own money. We never mow the lawns or put in any effort, really. (Well last week we had to call a chimney sweep. Phew! The work!) The bank put up the money for us to build up an investment nest egg, the tenants are paying it off, and we’re not.”

Peter Newport: 40 people to a property, eight people to a room: inside the nightmare that is renting in Queenstown

“I’m struggling to understand how this is different to the sweatshops in Asia that we try to grandly condemn by not buying clothes or electronic products made under such conditions. I have a strong feeling that some of those sweatshop workers might live in better conditions than Queenstown’s small army of minimum wage workers who keep our tourism machine rolling.”

Dominic Hoey: Five disgusting ’90s Auckland flats, remembered

“Things reached a new low (or a high depending on your tastes) when one of my flatmates wrapped himself in Gladwrap while my other flatmate shat on him as we were watching the Olympics.”

Alex Casey: The Bachelor NZ Power Rankings, Week One – Not the greatest party I’ve ever been to

“’It’s easy to meet people, but hard to find someone,’ said our new Bachelor Zac Franich, eyes narrowing on the distance as he tried to figure out what he had just said. It’s this inscrutable poetic hardship that has led him straight to the belly of the love beast in The Bachelor NZ season three, where the chimes are plentiful and the humble reality stars drive themselves around like peasants.”

Tim Lambourne: The amazing and true story of how the TV show Suits helped me win a tenancy dispute

“Friends of mine who work in commercial law in real life have said that Suits isn’t very realistic, but I don’t care. I didn’t watch 300 for the history lesson, I watched for the entertainment. But to 300’s credit I now know how Gerard Butler, Michael Fassbender and 298 other Spartans held off the Persian Army at the battle of Thermopylae.”

Don Rowe: How to master theHunter: Call of the Wild, as told by a real life hunter

“First, ascertain there are actually deer in the area you’re hunting. This can take a long ass time, but you can improve your chances with a few little tricks. Deer, like every other mammal, need to drink to survive. As they descend to drink from ponds or streams they leave tracks in the soft soil. Check the tracks for signs that might indicate their age. Tracks with leaves and other such detritus in them will have been there a while. Tracks that are still soft and somewhat moist are fresh. Similarly so with poos – moist, warm and slimy poos are fresh. Rock hard pellets are not.”

The Spinoff: Show me the money: Four home owners open their bank statements

“I haven’t travelled. I paid off a (small) student loan (with interest in the late 90s). I don’t have the cost of kids, I don’t have a TV – of any kind, let alone a flat screen one. It is a humble, rundown little piece of land that I bought, in the back of beyond. I have worked and worked and worked, and I’m still working, and I am exhausted. I have had a small amount of government help, and the security of being able to earn well. I have a head start on anyone trying to start out now.”

Greg Pritchard: The Eagles: The third worst band ever

“When I say that the Eagles are the third worst band of all time, people think I’m joking. But I’m pretty sure I’m right. The worst, of course, is Coldplay. Second, you can decide for yourself, but I’d say it’d be either Chris Brown or the Bee Gees. And that leaves the Eagles, whose music is distinctly vapid, forgettable and utterly without conviction.”

Sacha Judd: Live review: Has Justin Bieber lost his… purpose?

“At first, I thought his wooden movements and thousand-yard stare were part of the act: that he was now too cool to be moved by the thousands of screaming fans reaching for him in adoration. Bieber is no longer an enthusiastic teenybopper, after all. He’s serious. He’s cool. He wears serial killer spectacles.”

The Spinoff Longform Fund is dedicated to facilitating investigative journalism. Our focus is on supporting in-depth reporting on important New Zealand stories. Your donation will help us sustain this most resource-intensive form of journalism, ensuring that the most complex and important stories still get told.