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Design: Archi Banal
Design: Archi Banal

SocietySeptember 27, 2022

Why we’re talking about renting all week on The Spinoff

Design: Archi Banal
Design: Archi Banal

Madeleine Chapman introduces Rent Week, a whole week dedicated to the non-homeowners among us. 

I’m writing this introduction to Rent Week while on a break from packing up my room. I’m moving flats next weekend (purely coincidental timing) and I’ll tell you what, this shit is stressful. The last few weeks have been spent packing up my life, finding a new tenant for my current room before I’m made to pay double rent, sorting out what belongings I will have to part with before moving into the new space and organising to have all these things done outside of work hours. All this stress has resulted in me, a historically long sleeper, waking up at exactly 6.47am every morning like some sort of cursed anthropomorphic alarm clock.

I do not recommend moving houses but for many, many renters, it’s not a matter of choice. In a country where property ownership is the fast-track to financial stability, renting can feel like the worst of every world.

Which is why we’re dedicating a week (though we do cover this topic regularly throughout the year) to all things renting. A week (actually six days, RIP QEII) of content about the ins and outs of being a tenant in Aotearoa, featuring tales from long-term renters, the horrors of fixed term leases, a reminder of renters’ rights and the latest updates from healthy homes requirements. Plus, what does “reasonably clean and tidy” actually mean?

Some of it will be bleak because sometimes (read: a lot of the time) renting can be bleak. Some of it will hopefully be helpful for anyone unsure where they stand as a renter. Some of it will look at how renting can and does work for people. Some of it will be funny in an “it’s only funny now” way with flatmate horror stories and shit rentals. And because it wouldn’t be renting in New Zealand without mould, we’ll be showcasing the best worst mould photos from our readers. If you have the bad kind of mushrooms growing in your bedroom, send a picture to so we can laugh and cry together.

A huge thanks to The Spinoff Members for making all of the following content possible – if you want to support free and quality content please sign up today.

Renting is a fact of life for so many New Zealanders and we figure it’s worth taking a bit of time to chat about the highs and lows of living in a home that’s not your own. That’s it from me, my plates and bowls and too many random cups aren’t going to pack themselves.

Rent Week 2022 runs from September 27 to October 2. Read the best of our renting coverage here.

Keep going!