PHOTO: Photo: 123RF

Property managers and landlords are frequently collecting inappropriate and invasive information from prospective tenants, a renters advocacy group says.

The Privacy Commission is cracking down on property managers and landlords breaching the Privacy Act.

Renters groups call the industry a ‘wild west’ with little regulation or oversight for how property managers and landlords conduct their business.

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Renters United spokesperson Ashok Jacob told Nine to Noon landlords and property managers were doing what they thought they could get away with.

Tenants were being asked to provide information on their race, gender, sexual orientation, political affiliations and whether they intended to have children.

Some landlords and property managers requests were questionable when it came to privacy law, he said.


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“New Zealand is uniquely unregulated when it comes to the rental market and so there’s this real culture of property managers and landlords just doing what they think they won’t get caught doing, no matter whether or not it’s legal.”

The Privacy Commission would start taking enforcement action against errant landlords and property managers from March as part of a crackdown on Privacy Act breaches.