Auckland is currently facing a severe shortage of rental properties, leading to desperate measures from prospective tenants. Impression Real Estate, which manages over 1000 rentals in the Auckland region, has reported a staggering 900% increase in the number of tenants viewing each rental property in just six months, with an average of over 50 viewers per property. Several factors, including increased migration, flooding events, and domestic pressures, are contributing to this rental squeeze.
Rishabh Kapoor, CEO of Impression Real Estate, expressed concern about the desperation among tenants, some of whom have resorted to offering bribes to secure a rental ahead of others. While most offers have been monetary, ranging from $50 to $100 above the advertised rent, some tenants have tried to win favor with property managers by offering dinners, gifts, or even covering property improvement costs.
Kapoor emphasized the need to educate both landlords and tenants, particularly newcomers to the rental market, about their legal rights and responsibilities under the Residential Tenancies Act. Common issues include misunderstandings about maintenance and repair responsibilities.
The situation is further exacerbated by an influx of migrants who are seeking rental properties in the central city. Auckland's rental vacancy rate has dropped significantly, with high demand for CBD apartments, driven by residents displaced by weather events and migrants.
In response to these challenges, Impression Real Estate has introduced artificial intelligence (AI) technology in the form of a chatbot named "Marcia." This AI chatbot aims to assist tenants and landlords by answering common questions and providing information on various aspects of tenancy, including bond refunds, lease agreements, and finding service providers. The chatbot is available around the clock and is part of an effort to improve efficiency and transparency in the rental market.
Despite the potential for additional technology, such as virtual property viewings, current government regulations may need updating to accommodate these innovations and better serve tenants, especially those moving from abroad.
- Auckland is experiencing a severe shortage of rental properties, leading to a highly competitive rental market.
- Desperate tenants have been resorting to offering bribes, including monetary incentives and gifts, to secure rental properties.
- Impression Real Estate is using AI technology in the form of a chatbot named "Marcia" to assist tenants and landlords with common inquiries and improve transparency in the rental market.
- Education about legal rights and responsibilities under the Residential Tenancies Act is essential for both landlords and tenants.
- High demand for CBD apartments is driven by residents displaced by weather events and an influx of migrants.
- Current government regulations may need updating to accommodate innovative solutions like virtual property viewings.