Most new migrants decide to rent a house when they arrive. This gives them enough time to save more money and decide where they want to live. There are many types of houses available in Hawke's Bay. You should also think about the school you want your children to attend because schools have home zones.
Properties for rent are advertised in newspapers, real estate companies and websites. Usually under category headings like 'houses to let' 'accommodation vacant' 'rental properties'.
Generally landlords like a reference of a previous landlord or some kind of character reference that can prove you will be a reliable tenant. Places to look for rental properties are:
TENANCY AGREEMENT This is a written, legal contract between you and the landlord, and the law says you must have one. You have to talk about and agree on what is written in the contract. You should sign the agreement when you have decided you want to live in a place.
You should not sign any contract unless you fully understand everything that is written in it, because it is a legal document when you sign it.
You may have to pay RENT IN ADVANCE (usually two weeks rent) and a BOND (agreed between you and the landlord, but usually between two and four weeks rent). The bond is held by Tenancy Services to cover any unpaid rent, damage to the property or other claims when you move out. You should keep a record of all payments made to the landlord. If you pay your rent in cash, your landlord MUST give you a receipt.
If you have any questions about what you have to do or what the landlord has to do when you are renting, contact Tenancy Services for free advice.
Bank Details You can buy a house only if you can pay the full price of the property or arrange a long-term loan or mortgage from a lender, such as a finance house or bank. The finance house or bank will look at your income, what you own, your debts, and your credit rating. Most banks will ask you to pay a deposit of 10% of the cost of the house before allowing you to have a mortgage.
Mortgages are available from banks, credit unions, finance houses, insurance companies, and savings and loan associations. Make sure you choose the mortgage that is most suitable for you.
Processing Fees All lenders charge a fee for processing your loan, which is usually one per cent of the amount borrowed, but can be less if the mortgage is very high.
When buying a house you can go to your local council and read their file on the property. You may also be able to speak with a building inspector.
Buying at auction If you want to buy a property at auction you must register your interest with the land agent; talk to your lawyer about the value of the property; make sure you have the money; and arrange who will make the bids at the auction.
Leasehold Land Enquiries Leasehold land is land which is rented from the owner for a specified term under a lease. At the expiry of the term the land reverts back to the owner. For information about Hawke's Bay Regional Council leasehold land (the biggest residential land leaser in Hawke's Bay).
Housing New Zealand provides a range of housing services for people on low to moderate incomes, or those with special needs.
For migrants to be eligible to apply for a state house they must be permanent residents for two years or receive an emergency benefit, due to hardship. Eligible applicants are placed on a waiting list and priority is given to those with the greatest housing need, rather than to those who have waited the longest.
Quota refugees are automatically eligible to apply for a Housing New Zealand house.
Once the application for housing is lodged with Housing New Zealand, you are assessed to determine your housing need. The assessment considers things like your current living arrangements and social, medical and personal needs. This ensures that those with the greatest need receive help first.
Tenants and applicants who are not confident speaking English can access Language Line - a free telephone interpreting service. Ask a Housing New Zealand staff member for Language Line help.
Housing New Zealand tenants pay either an incomerelated rent or a market rent. Tenants whose income is below a set threshold pay an income-related rent of no more than 25 percent of their income. Tenants who earn more than this threshold pay up to the maximum market rent for the property.