Man on bed with a headache

PHOTO: Image by

Affected Tenants Compensated Following Property Manager’s Invasion of Privacy

Incident Overview

A disturbing incident took place where a man, who was trying to rest after a long flight while his flatmates celebrated the Rugby Sevens, awoke to find his property manager filming him while he was in bed. Hamilton renter Sam Fullerton-Smith recounted the incident to NZME, describing how his bedroom door swung open and the property manager, real estate agent Sue Kim, yelled his name while pointing a camera at him.

Tenancy Tribunal Condemnation

Sue Kim, acting as a pseudo-property manager for her friends Jee Yeon Lee and Jun Hyuk-Lee, was instructing them on managing the Huntington property. However, her actions during this period, which involved assuming the role of a property manager at the rental, were deemed unlawful by the Tenancy Tribunal. Adjudicator Tania Harris denied Kim’s request for a re-hearing after she was initially ordered to compensate the tenants with $1250 for breaching their privacy and right to quiet enjoyment.


Privacy Breaches and Justifications

During an inspection in November of the previous year, Kim opened a bedroom cupboard and drawer without permission and discovered “some cannabis.” On a separate occasion, she entered the house without providing notice while the tenants were hosting a two-day party for the Sevens weekend. Kim proceeded to film the group, who were dressed as cavemen for the occasion, before entering Fullerton-Smith’s room and filming him in bed.

During the subsequent hearing in March, Kim did not deny these incidents but argued that she was entitled to do so because she considered herself the owner and believed she could act as she pleased. Kim claimed that her actions did not breach the Residential Tenancies Act and referred to the party incident as an “emergency,” justifying her entry into the property without the required 24 hours’ notice. Kim also asserted that opening cupboards during a tenancy inspection was a normal practice. to launch real estate industry recruitment site

Adjudicator’s Decision and Kim’s Lack of Knowledge

Adjudicator Harris firmly stated that the situation did not constitute an emergency, highlighting that Kim had other options available to her without trespassing on the premises. Harris declared that inspecting drawers and cupboards without permission was a clear breach of privacy. Emphasizing the importance of owners and agents complying with the Residential Tenancies Act, Harris condemned both incidents as harassment of the tenants and ruled that Kim had committed an unlawful act.

The adjudicator also observed that Kim appeared to be unaware of the legal requirements pertaining to her role as a property manager.

Serepisos’ mum facing eviction

Tenant Action and Compensation

Following the breach of their privacy, Fullerton-Smith and his flatmates decided to move out and brought their concerns to the Tenancy Tribunal. In March, the tenants were awarded compensation, but Kim has not yet paid the amount. The footage from the party, stored on a USB, was ordered to be deleted by Harris.

No Rehearing Granted

Kim’s request for a rehearing was recently denied by adjudicator Harris, who stated that she had failed to establish any substantial wrongdoing or miscarriage of justice.

Speaking on behalf of the group, Fullerton-Smith expressed their amicable relationship with their neighbors and acknowledged that they were not perfect but emphasized the significance of their privacy.

(Note: The formatting provided using h2 and h3 header tags can be used in a WordPress environment for structuring the content.)