A Tauranga landlord, fed up with dealing with "dodgy tenants", is selling up his rental properties and putting his money into the sharemarket.
Earlier this month, the Bay of Plenty Times reported Trade Me figures showed the supply of available rental properties dropped by 18 per cent to 2465 listings in the October-December quarter.
However, demand for rentals ballooned by 17 per cent for the same period and the average weekly rent jumped by 18 per cent to $405.
Property managers said they had dozens of people calling them every week looking for a rental property, with many being rented out without being advertised.
The rental shortage was attributed to the city's rapid growth as well as the Reserve Bank's restriction on loan-to-value ratio (LVR) lending, which had forced many potential first-home buyers to continue renting.
However, Tauranga landlord Daniel Sycamore said property investors were choosing to leave their properties empty or put them on the market.
Mr Sycamore said he had put two of his properties on the market this year after a string of bad tenants who trashed his rentals and failed to pay thousands of dollars' worth of rent.
He told the Bay of Plenty Times he would rather invest his money in the sharemarket than risk renting them out again.
"I have rentals in Rotorua and I have never had any problems, but Tauranga is different for some reason," he said.
"I have just had a string of dodgy tenants who have cost me thousands and, for me, it is just not worth it anymore. I would rather invest in the sharemarket where I can make a profit without the hassle. It's not just me, I know a lot of former property investors who do not see the point anymore.
"You would have to be crazy to have rentals in this town.
"It's sad because I know there are some great tenants out there but the ones I get just don't seem to know how to look after someone else's property. There is no respect." Papamoa property investor David King has also put two of his rentals on the market this year.
"I have had people smash holes in the walls, steal curtains, all kinds of things. The cost is too much to bear anymore. The problem is the bonds do not cover the damage and when you try to work things out you have to go to the Tenancy Tribunal and they are swayed toward the tenant for some reason."
"You can never get your money back and if you do it is drip fed, $10 a week."
Mr Sycamore said the Government needed to look at changing the legislation so that landlords could get proper reparation from tenants.
"At the moment, landlords can be fined for all kinds of things but tenants cannot. All we can do is try to get the money back to cover the cost of damage they have made.
"They have all the power, it is not worth it and until it is even, the rental shortage in the Bay will get worse because people do not want to take the risk anymore.
"These dodgy tenants will have to bite the bullet and save up and buy their own homes. If they want to smash holes in their walls that is up to them, but they will not be doing it to me anymore."
For more articles from this region, go to Bay of Plenty Times