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Statement from the Department of Building and Housing

28 October 2005: The National Manager Tenancy Services for the Department of Building and Housing Nigel Bickle today said the proposed changes to how tenancy services are delivered are designed to enhance services for both tenants and landlords.

“While final decisions by the Chief Executive of the Department have yet to be taken, the intent of the proposal will mean more heartland New Zealand communities will have access to tenancy services.

"The Department is looking to enhance access to tenancy services for landlords and tenants in the way that best suits them. This means people in small towns will be able to access services without having to travel.

"The proposed changes will double the number of places the Department will provide face-to-face services to, including towns such as Motueka, Kaikoura and Picton. In addition the Department will be enhancing landlord and tenant access to phone and internet-based services.

"The proposals, developed over the last year, have involved consultation with both tenant and landlord organisations which are supportive of the proposed changes. The Real Estate Institute of New Zealand is just one of the Department’s stakeholders which fully supports the proposals.

"The new Minister was briefed on the proposal on Wednesday. At that briefing he asked for further information in relation to a number of aspects of the detail, to ensure that the proposal would meet its objectives of enhancing service delivery before final decisions were taken."