When you’re backpacking the country finding the right accommodation in New Zealand is essential. If you decide you’d like to stay somewhere for a little longer – maybe you’ve found a really good job you just don’t want to leave – then getting a place of your own or renting with someone else might be a good option for you. Looking for a flat, apartment or even a house in New Zealand is not that hard. We’ll show you how to go about it.
Where to look for accommodation in New Zealand
The best way to start is – as usual – the internet. Both websites TradeMe and Gumtree Auckland are your best shot. They are similar to Ebay and easy to navigate. You register, fill in your profile and start your search. When it comes to property, rentals or flatmates you will be shown the auctioneer’s contact details and get straight in touch with them.
There’s a lot of other websites, but most of them won’t be regularly updated or might not be free of charge. Another option is Flatfinder though we believe the above mentioned websites will give you the best options.
Alternatively you can browse ads in your local paper or even try the student housing in your area. The latter will be fully furnished, are flexible when it comes to renting time frames and will be a cheap option. You will, however, have to share bathroom and kitchen with other students. Check if you actually need to be enrolled as a student to get in.
Looking for accommodation BEFORE arriving in New Zealand
This will prove rather difficult as most landlords or rental agencies will want to meet their tenants in person. Often you have to make an appointment to view the place and will be competing with others interested.
If you already have an employment contract or are going to be working as an intern you might want to talk to your employer if they could organize accommodation for you. Quite often one intern succeeds the other so if you’re lucky a room will just have become available.
Distance from home to work
It might pay to have a closer look at how long it will take you to get to work. Public transport in cities like Auckland can be rather expensive and unreliable so paying a little more for your accommodation but being closer to your workplace will be cheaper in the long run.
If you’re just flatting you might not come across a tenancy agreement though by law you have the right to be handed one. Usually you will have to pay 2 or 3 weeks of rent in advance and then you pay weekly or fortnightly. Cash or bank transfer from one account to the other is most common.
Power, water, internet and telephone might not always be included in the rent so make sure you ask. There is no central heating in New Zealand so keep in mind that power costs might be rather high in winter.