Very short essay.
Customer service in New Zealand is shit.
Renting a house in New Zealand is shit too, but that’s a whole different subject to rant about.
As a matter of fact, I’ll just write about renting in NZ. Unlike renting in The Netherlands, this is not done through a corporation, many rental houses are privately owned by regular folks like you and me. They hope to make money while sitting on their ass, by renting out their houses.
My experience with renting here in NZ has not been good. The communication and paperwork, contracts and all legal other stuff will go through a property agency. Renting through an agency comes with a property manager and that comes with house inspections every 3 months.
A legal nuiscance that will invade your privacy. Our property manager takes photos of everything. No idea what she does with them, probably store them somewhere and then check what the difference is when the tennants move out. (Damage, lost property) I always make sure there are big purple rubber dicks spread out through the house in not so obvious places.
Then there is the repairs and maintenance issues. The general rule is, if a repair is required, you can state that on a form that will be picked up during the 3-monthly invasion of privacy a.k.a. the inspection, or you can contact the property manager. Once a request has been communicated with property manager, she then has to contact the owners, as the owners of the house are the end of the line and still the sole decision makers for repairs.
The owners of my rental are cheapskates and try to save money on everything. Instead of hiring a professional, they go through an individual that is listed as a “repair man” in the yellow pages, a guy who learned the ropes from watching instruction videos on YouTube.
For instance, we had some trouble with the bathroom door, it didn’t close properly. Made a note on the inspection form and hoped for the best. A few days later I got a text message from Mr. Fix It. We made an appointment when he could have a look and fix the door. At that time, I was still naive and thought this was a One Visit Repair.
Sidenote: I always make sure I am home during the repairs, I had 20% of my DVD collection stolen (only the discs too) when I was renting by myself when I was single and had no friends, so it couldn’t been them.
Mr. Fix It arrived on time and he had a look at the door. He opened and closed it to confirm the issue we had with it, ah yes, it did not close properly. He then proceeded to look on his phone and about half an hour later he told me he didn’t have the tools nor material to fix it AT THIS MOMENT. He had to come back another time.
He replaced the door with a piece of wood covered in primer paint in 3 easy visits.
Other concerns I had for repairs, like a major leak in the bathtub due to the sealant not being present has been ignored by the property manager. Instead she wanted to bring to my and the owners attention that there were 3 white specks on the bathroom wall underneath the mirror (was toothpaste and rubbed off), so that wall could be repainted, to make it “esthetically” better.
Then there was that time that the property manager “forgot” to mention someone will be on the roof to fix the grouting and tiles, so when I came home and saw mountaineering ropes on the roof, I though the house was being broken into. Property manager lied and claims that she notified me by email and phone, yet I still have to receive that email or phonecall. (It’s been 2 years).
Hopefully the housing market will crash or the government will finally come to its senses and reformed the rental market to that of a first world country.