Anthony Manley hopes people in his St Leonards neighbourhood can help catch the culprit who vandalised his family car under the cover of darkness on Saturday night.
Mr Manley woke up on Sunday morning to find someone had "chucked a bucket of white paint" over his black Nissan Ringroad car parked outside his home on Brunswick St, west of Hastings city.
"On Saturday night I decided to leave my car outside, thinking it would be ok.
"I got up in the morning and saw someone had vandalised it. Another chap down the road also had white paint over his car."
Mr Manly bought the car about four months ago.
He reported the incident to police and hoped others who may have seen anything suspicious in the area on Saturday night could also report it to the authorities.
"It's just so heartbreaking to have to fork out for something that we're not responsible for.
"We're finding it tough as it is. I am on a sickness benefit, my partner is a student nurse and we have two kids.
"Now we find ourselves having to pay for someone else's stupid prank.
"We want the word to get out there, if anyone has information, please tell the police about it so we can get something done about it."
Mr Manley and his children went for a walk yesterday morning just to "get out of the house" and they discovered a white paint trail.
"It looks like it started from Titoki St, then came into Fitzroy St, then on to Brunswick St.
"A gentleman on Fitzroy also had his car hit with white paint.
" I've asked him to report it to police as well."
Mr Manley moved into the Brunswick home about four months ago and said the neighbourhood was very friendly. Neighbours were worried about the attack and one had even bought some acrylic spray to see if the white paint could be eliminated.
"But it didn't really work. There's a fair bit of white paint on my car now, it's got the whole wheel and the brake."
Mr Manley said he had called his insurance company and would know today whether the cost of repairs was covered.
"We've not had trouble here before and I'm just asking for help from the community to find who did this."