Friday, 14 October 2011

Police Community Report: September 2011

by Constable Jon-Paul TREMAIN

Tënä koutou katoa.
I thought it would be a timley reminder to property owners or anyone
thinking of renting out their address to remember that criminals or
others who wish to evade the attention of police will target
semi-rural and rural locations as a place to live; the isolation and a
smaller police presence are the main reasons for this.
One tactic police have noticed is that a landlord will be approached
by a female looking to rent an address. She presents well and may or
may not have children. There is no mention of a partner or associates
and almost always he is never present at a face-to-face meeting
between the parties. However, within a short time of the address
becoming tenanted a male figure appears on the scene; invariably his
associates begin to make appearances and the situation deteriorates
with issues arising such as on-going parties, noise complaints,
intimidation of neighbours, loud arguments, domestic violence, and
issues with destruction of property at the address.
My advice is that under no circumstances should a landlord rent an
address without a face-to-face meeting with the prospective renter.
Treat the process as you would a job interview, so have a series of
questions prepared. Insist on references and contact all referees
including the previous landlord. Establish clear boundaries such as no
sub-leasing of rooms at the address, and ensure that issues
surrounding animals are clearly understood. Insist on meeting all
parties intending to move to the address, including partners.
Information on referees and credit checks can be found through the
Department of Building and Housing by visiting
www.dbh.govt.nz/pub-pre-tenancy-index, and a criminal conviction check
through www.justice.govt.nz/privacy/#application. It is important to
note that the tenant has to authorise the release of his or her
criminal convictions history to the landlord by the Department of
Justice. Non-compliance with a request for any of these checks may be
an indicator that the tenant has something to hide.
A rental property is an investment, and I am sure most landlords want
a tenant who respects their property, the neighbours and the wider
community. Waikouaiti Police are happy to take any query in relation
to this subject and can be contacted on the number below.
If you require information regarding road conditions telephone Transit
New Zealand on 0800 44 44 49. If you see anything suspicious or if
you wish to speak to the Police regarding any other matter you can
contact us on 03 465 9127, or alternatively anonymous information can
be passed on by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. In emergencies
dial 111. Until next month, take care.

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