Helpful reading

Simpson Western | 16 Feb 2022

Your land, your rules?

Many purchasers, when searching for their dream home or section, may not be aware that there could be various restrictions on the use of the land that they intend to purchase. These restrictions can impact on the use and enjoyment of a property. We take a look at some common restrictions.

Simpson Western | 15 Feb 2022

Agreement for Sale & Purchase of Real Estate

The Auckland District Law Society has released a new edition of its widely used agreement for sale and purchase of real estate.  This new edition contains a number of changes that vendors and purchasers should be aware of.

Simpson Western | 01 Oct 2021

Commercial rent relief: Epidemic changes

With the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic changing the way many of us have been able to use our traditional working spaces, the government has proposed to step in and provide an avenue for agreement on rent relief.

Simpson Western | 21 Sep 2021

No Access Clauses and Cancelation of Leases

Just as during the lockdowns last year, this year's change in alert levels has highlighted the importance of "No Access" clauses in commercial leases and their impact on a landlord's right to cancel for non-payment of rent.

Trust eSpeaking | 02 Sep 2021

Buying your first home using KiwiSaver funds

KiwiSaver members may use their funds to help buy their first home; this is straightforward. What happens, however, if you want to buy your first home and you are already a trustee of a trust that owns property?

Simpson Western | 03 Aug 2021

Check the Chattels

Chattels listed in an agreement for sale and purchase must be delivered to the purchaser on settlement in the same state of repair as at the date on which the agreement was signed. It is therefore important for a purchaser to ensure all chattels included in the sale are of an acceptable standard before they sign the agreement.

Fineprint | 13 Jul 2021

Buying off the plans

It’s no secret that the housing market in New Zealand is incredibly competitive at the moment. Already on a trajectory pre-Covid, demand has shot up since New Zealand came out of lockdown. As a result of this tight market, many people are deciding to buy off the plans. 

Property Speaking | 24 Jun 2021

Clarity around fixtures and fittings

In December 2020, a commercial landlord and their tenant found themselves in the High Court arguing about who was responsible for replacing fixtures and fittings because their lease was silent on the issue. These types of disputes around fixtures and fittings in commercial leases are quite common.

Property Speaking | 24 Jun 2021

Property briefs

Increases to income and price thresholds for First Home Grant.

Housing Acceleration Fund.

Kāinga Ora Land Acquisition.

Apprenticeship Boost.

Property Speaking | 24 Jun 2021

Recent property tax changes

In March 2021, the government announced three changes to property tax rules that are likely to affect anyone with residential property investments. The changes include extending the bright-line period from five years to 10 years, changing the main home exemption ‘test’ and removing the ability to deduct mortgage interest from rental income. 

Simpson Western | 12 May 2021

Government Housing Package

One of the most talked about changes of the Government's recently introduced housing package was doubling of the bright line period from five to ten years.

Property Speaking | 22 Mar 2021

Reverse mortgages

The current combination of increasing living costs, rising house prices and low interest rates has seen more than property-seekers signing up to home loans. On the other side of the coin, some older homeowners are seeking ‘reverse mortgages’ from their lenders in order to release the growing equity in their property.

Property Speaking | 22 Mar 2021

Rent reviews in commercial leases

Negotiating commercial leases can involve a significant amount of crystal ball gazing – particularly when some leases can last decades. As recent times have shown, the landscape at the start of a lease can be miles away from the situation at the end of the lease.

Property Speaking | 22 Mar 2021

Property briefs

Is your property fully insured?

Stage 2 of the Residential Tenancies Act changes now in force.

Due diligence on a prospective tenant vs that person’s right to privacy.

Fineprint | 20 Nov 2020

Holiday houses

Many Kiwis will be looking to rent a holiday home for the traditional summer holiday this year... Whether you own a holiday home and are looking for some extra income, or you want to rent a place for the whānau Christmas, there are a few things to remember.


Fineprint | 20 Nov 2020

Building a fence in town

As the daylight hours extend, so too does the list of summer jobs that have been building up over the past year. On that list for many will be replacing those rickety old boundary fences that surround your house. Before you rip them all down, we have a case study that clarifies why it’s so important not to rush.

Property Speaking | 21 Oct 2020

Changes to the Building Act 2004

Changes to the Building Act 2004 came into force on 31 August 2020. 

Property Speaking | 21 Oct 2020

Understanding your property title

Before you buy a property it is important that you understand exactly what you are purchasing. Your property title records (or should record) all of the interests that affect your title. That way, you are fully informed about any rights or obligations you may have – before you buy. 

Property Speaking | 21 Oct 2020

Property briefs

Allowing for COVID-related settlement delays.

Residential Tenancies Amendment Act 2020: three stages of changes.

Reminder: Temporary COVID residential tenancies changes have ended.

Property Speaking | 22 Jun 2020

Commercial leases post-COVID

In the past three months, most landlords and tenants would have become more familiar with the details of their lease...>

Property Speaking | 22 Jun 2020

Residential tenancies post-COVID

Due to the COVID lockdown and the ensuing impact on the country’s economy, the government has made temporary changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 ...>

Property Speaking | 22 Jun 2020

Property Briefs

Healthy homes standards compliance
Landlord alert - changes to commercial tenancies
Mortgages and loans for property owners ...>

simpson western | 08 Jun 2020

Covid 19 Rent Relief - Policy released

The Government has announced its plan to change the Property Law Act aimed at facilitating rent and outgoings relief for small businesses that are struggling to meet fixed costs due to the loss of revenue caused by COVID-19.

Property Speaking | 07 Nov 2019

Leasing commercial premises

Commercial leases come in varying shapes and sizes. Whether you operate a transport business and need a place to park your trucks...>

Property Speaking | 07 Nov 2019

Residential tenancies

The Residential Tenancies Amendment Act 2019 came into force on 27 August 2019. This legislation affects both landlords and tenants...>

Property Speaking | 07 Nov 2019

Property Briefs

Frequent buying and selling of property tax rules under review, Buyers must take care when cancelling an agreement, First home buyer scheme changes...>

Property Speaking | 07 Nov 2019

Commercial Leases

The Residential Tenancies Amendment Act 2019 came into force on 27 August 2019. This legislation affects both landlords and tenants...>

Property Speaking | 01 Aug 2019

The secret lives of tenants

Following publicity in 2018 that some property managers were using the ‘KFC test’ to vet prospective tenants, landlords’ protection of their tenants’ privacy has come under scrutiny by the Privacy Commissioner.

Property Speaking | 01 Aug 2019


Subdivisions are more common than you think. A subdivision can range from the carving up of hundreds of acres of rural land for housing, developing land in a prime commercial area, selling half your quarter-acre section or simply wanting to extend your boundary a few metres.

Property Speaking | 01 Aug 2019

Property Briefs

Building report conditions and AML one year on

Property Speaking | 17 May 2019

Property sale and purchase

It’s essential that the sale and purchase agreement contains the correct wording, particulars and information in respect of the GST position of the parties to the agreement.

Property Speaking | 17 May 2019

Looking for your first home?

The purchase of your first home may be more in reach than you think.

Property Speaking | 17 May 2019

Property Briefs

Unit Titles Act 2010: are you complying? Healthy Homes Standards: what you need to know, Damage to your rental: who foots the bill?

Fineprint | 11 Apr 2019

Capital gains tax

The much-anticipated final report of the Tax Working Group (TWG) was released on 21 February and, unsurprisingly, recommended the introduction of a broad-based, realised capital gains tax (CGT) regime.

Melanie Baker-Jones | 27 Aug 2018

Purchasing property with family

When purchasing property with family it may feel awkward to raise questions as to how to manage the legal arrangements; however it's an important question to ask.

Property Speaking | 07 Aug 2018

Property Briefs

Warmer homes for Kiwis, Meth Contamination and Foreign Investment in Residential Property...

Property Speaking | 07 Aug 2018

The great lawyers’ fee debate

Lawyers’ fees are often a difficult subject to discuss. They shouldn’t be.

Property Speaking | 07 Aug 2018

Guiding your kids into flatting

Flat leases are really ‘residential tenancy agreements’. Agreements should be in writing, however, an unwritten agreement can sometimes be enforced. >

Commercial eSpeaking | 18 May 2018

Business Briefs

Is your business infringing existing intellectual property rights?  Do your homework...

Property Speaking | 09 May 2018

Purchasing from a developer

There are risks associated with this popular type of purchase which many people are not aware of.

Property Speaking | 09 May 2018

Pre-purchase inspections

The final step before you settle your property purchase is to undertake a ‘pre-purchase inspection’. 

Property Speaking | 09 May 2018

Keeping NZ safe from money launderers

From 1 July, all law firms will be subject to the requirements of the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Financing of Terrorism Act 2009.

Property Speaking | 09 May 2018

Bright-line test period extended

To help keep a lid on the property market, the Minister of Revenue recently announced an extension to the bright-line test period from two to five years.

Property Speaking | 09 May 2018

Is your rental safe and healthy?

New laws came into effect on 1 July 2016 that require landlords to make their properties safe and healthy for tenants. Does your rental property meet the new standard?

Property Speaking | 15 Aug 2017

Agreement to lease

An agreement to lease is an agreement between a landlord and tenant of commercial property. It gives the parties an opportunity to record their leasing arrangements before they are formalised in a deed of lease. Here's how to see if you are you making the most of it. >

Property Speaking | 15 Aug 2017

Tenants not paying up?

Renting out residential property is a great way to make some extra money, pay your mortgage off faster and build an investment nest egg. It can cause real frustration, however, when your tenant fails to pay rent on time. What are your rights when your tenants don’t pay up?  >

Property Speaking | 15 Aug 2017

Property briefs

Buying a house – are you covered? Hidden titles for safety under Domestic Violence Act; and Cross lease issues: ‘warts and all’ clauses... >

Fineprint | 26 Jul 2017

Help for first home buyers

It’s every Kiwi’s dream to own their own quarter-acre share of paradise, but it’s becoming harder than ever before.  How can you help? >

Property Speaking | 09 May 2017

Property briefs

Your KiwiSaver funds – more flexible than you might think; More on multi offers; and Grants available to insulate rental properties >

Property Speaking | 07 May 2017


Becoming an Airbnb host sounds like the perfect way to fund some overseas travel for yourself and rent out your home while you are away. But you should be aware of the key tax considerations. >

Property Speaking | 06 May 2017

Sharing a driveway

Many episodes of Neighbours at War told of disputes regarding shared driveways. Whether you currently own a property or you’re in the market to buy a property with a shared driveway, it pays to know your rights and obligations...>

FINEPRINT | 03 May 2017

Buying off the plans

If you live in one of New Zealand’s cities, it’s likely that you’ve noticed a multitude of brand-new apartments, terraces, and town houses popping up in your area. >


FINEPRINT | 16 Dec 2016

Letting your holiday home

Whether you are currently letting your property for short-term visitor accommodation yourself or via the likes of Airbnb or BookaBach, or are considering doing so, we recommend that you give some thought to the following matters. >

Property Speaking | 03 Dec 2016

Property briefs

Meth testing in a property – from a vendor’s perspective; Multi-offers on a property; and Terminating a commercial lease for unpaid rent. >

Property Speaking | 02 Dec 2016

Don't rush the sale and purchase

Buying a house – on a stress scale of 1 to 10 (10 being the worst) – is said to be an 11. Don’t Rush into Signing an Agreement for Sale and Purchase. Always wait to get legal advice. >

Property Speaking | 01 Dec 2016

Get your wills and EPAs in order

You work hard to build up your assets over your lifetime, so you should decide what happens to them if you become incapacitated and when you die. Make sure you have a Will and EPAs. >

Commercial eSpeaking | 01 Sep 2016

Changes to construction law

The Construction Contracts Act 2002 (CCA) sets out a number of duties and obligations on both those commissioning building work, and those undertaking it. >