PHOTO: AIMEE KELLY Richard and Kristy Kelly have been named the best landlords in New Zealand.

Kristy and Richard Kelly had paid off their first mortgage by their mid-20s and now, in their mid-30s, the Taranaki couple own seven properties and are on track to retire by 50.

Those seven properties, all tenanted and valued at $2.5 million, have seen the  Kellys named New Zealand’s Best Landlords by the NZ Property Investors’ Federation.

Kristy, an accountant, and Richard, a semi-professional rugby referee, entered the competition not expecting to win, but just to see where they were at.

“We were over the moon to win. It was a real wow moment and very humbling,” Kristy said.