Periodic vs fixed-term tenancies

The Citizens Advice Bureau says people need to be aware of recent changes to the Residential Tenancies Act.

On February 11, 2021, changes made to the Residential Tenancies Act came into force. One of the changes is that any fixed-term Tenancy Agreement that started on or after February 11, 2021 will automatically become a periodic tenancy.

What is a periodic tenancy?

A periodic tenancy is an ongoing agreement, without a fixed end date. If you sign onto a periodic tenancy it will continue until the tenant or the landlord provide notice to end the tenancy.

Ending a periodic tenancy

A periodic tenancy can be ended using any of the reasons listed in the Residential Tenancies Act.

The tenant can end a periodic tenancy if every tenant named on the agreement agree on a set move-out date. To end a periodic tenancy, tenants must give notice of at least 28 days and it has to be in writing (email or post). The written notice must contain the address it relates to, the date for the end the tenancy and be signed by all the tenants listed on the tenancy agreement.

Landlords can end a periodic tenancy if:
· the property is being sold
· the owner, or a member of their family, needs to move back into the property
· extensive alterations, repairs or redevelopment is to take place

In each case the landlord must provide no less than 90 days’ notice in writing. The written notice must contain the address it relates to, the date the tenancy is due to end, the reason the tenancy is ending and be signed by the landlord.

What is a fixed-term tenancy?

A fixed-term tenancy is an agreement that has a defined period of time in the agreement, or start and end dates.

Ending a fixed-term tenancy

It’s difficult for either party to end a fixed-term tenancy early. Ending a fixed-term tenancy requires the agreement of both parties or an order made by the Tenancy Tribunal.

  • This Solutions Column has been compiled by Vani and is a regular Times editorial from the Pakuranga Citizens Advice Bureau. Email enquiries.pakuranga@cab.org.nz or Visit us at the Library Building, Pakuranga, Phone 576 8331 and at Botany Citizens Advice Bureau, rear Food Court entrance, Botany Town Centre, Phone 271 5382 or 0800 367 222 for free, confidential and informative help.