Property Manager Gets Trespass Order from Tenant!

29th October 2013 | By: Investor

Judy Morgan - Property Manager in WhangareiI guess you never stop learning! I have a tenant in a block of flats, who has been disturbing the peace and quiet of fellow tenants. After receiving plenty of warning, another complaint saw me knocking on his door. I was greeted by extremely loud music/noise. I asked the tenant to turn the sounds down and to come out.

At that, the tenant with his extremely intoxicated mother appeared. I wasn’t sure if the tenant was intoxicated or not but Mum certainly was. I suggested to the tenant that he give me three weeks notice to avoid going to court. At which time the mother started verbally abusing me. At that I left and rang the Police. Only after the 3rd call to Police was I told that the Police do not interfere in tenancy matters.

O.K! I returned to the office and lodged an application with the Tenancy Tribunal for eviction, thinking that would be the end of that. How wrong was I !!!!!

Following a weekend of peace the tenant returned – stating that he was feeling bullied!! We, (my admin assistant) and I tried explaining to him that it would be more to his benefit to give notice rather than be evicted!!! This guy is somewhat “likeable” but its his “hangers on”. He also denied ever receiving any letters/texts, which is totally untrue as I had hand delivered all of the letters.

I thought he had left – Whew!!!!!! However, he returned with a Trespass Order naming ME!!!! I was absolutely astounded so went to the police station to discuss this matter further only to be told that the Police do not interfere in tenancy matters and that the Trespass Act overrides the Tenancy Act.

The T.O. states I can only enter the property for and I quote:- “inspections, necessary repairs & maintenance, an emergency while accompanied by an official authority – Police, Ambulance Fire Brigade, City Council”. How ironic I thought not to mention ambiguous!!!! The Police will not interfere in tenancy matters but would attend – to prevent me doing my job!!!

So it appeared, that a tenant could “officially lock-out” an owner/pm, because the tenant is the legal occupier.

I could not let this matter stand so I re-contacted the Police voicing my concern as to how this situation could be. I was subsequently told by a senior officer that I, ‘as an organisation’, cannot be subject to a Trespass Order and, as such the said order was void, but this would not be the case as an individual.

I’m sure you will agree that this situation is outlandish and must be addressed. Subsequently I have made an appointment with Phil Heatley to discuss this, and other tenancy matters that I strongly believe require amendment. i.e. the extensive notices required in varying situations; the abandonment law and more.

I also intend writing to Thomas Chin – a political lobbyist.

I have had to deal with some illogical and confounding aspects during my career, but being barred from entering a property under my management via a ‘trespass order’ gives new meaning to the word “bewilderment”.

I will keep you posted to the outcome of my meeting and correspondence. Meanwhile I would welcome your views so feel free to email me.

Story courtesy of Judy Morgan Property Management

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