Auckland landlords claim they are owed thousands of dollars by a property manager who ran Ray White Henderson until last month.
David Sharma, whose contract with Ray White ended last month, denies owing the landlords any money.
A Ray White spokeswoman said the matter has been reported to the police, a forensic audit is under way and the Real Estate Agents Authority (REAA) was investigating.
Sharma put his Property Management Out West company into liquidation on Monday, Companies Office records show.
A spokeswoman for Ray White confirmed that between 20 and 25 landlords had been affected by a possible misappropriation of funds, resulting in late and irregular payments.
West Auckland-based landlord Neil Pinto told the Herald he believed he had lost more than $20,000 in payments from his rental property and payments were regularly late or missed when Sharma managed his property.
He said the situation had put him and his family under "extreme financial hardship".
Ray White Henderson had managed his property since September 2012 but in October 2016 the property manager he worked with left the job.
Sharma then began managing the property and Pinto said he began to notice he wasn't being paid as regularly as before.
"As of August last year the payments completely stopped coming," he alleged.
Pinto claimed he approached Sharma, who offered to pay back the $20,000 in weekly instalments.
"David said there was a glitch in their computers and that's why the payments had gone missing and that he was going to arrange for the payment to be made to me, but what stuck out to me was the fact that when he said he was going to make those payments he said he would like to make them in instalments of $5000 each, which I really couldn't understand," Pinto said.
"None of the payments came through, all I got was excuses."
Pinto approached the REAA for mediation.
Another Auckland landlord, who does not wish to be named, formerly had three properties managed by Ray White Henderson and claims he was owed between $1200 and $3500.
"In the last 12 months I don't think any payments were on time," he claimed.
When a scheduled payment this month was late and he couldn't reach Sharma, he said he was shocked to find that the Ray White Henderson website no longer existed.
On Friday, he received an email from Sharma to say the company had gone into liquidation and he had told tenants to pay rent into the landlords' accounts.
"I never thought these things would happen in New Zealand," he said.
"In the past few years the property market has been very buoyant. I think every property manager must be smiling. I just don't understand how you can get yourself into a financial mess like this."
He said he was still waiting to get his property files and keys from Sharma.
Ray White spokeswoman Lisa Pennell said the company had advised all landlords of Property Management Out West Limited about the situation.
"Late last week, information came to light that a former member of Ray White who ran an independent property management company known as Property Management Out West Limited had potentially been misappropriating funds, resulting in late and irregular payments to approximately 20-25 landlords," she said.
"From our early investigations over the past few days, it would appear that irregular financial activity began to occur on a regular basis in November 2017, after notice was given in respect of his termination from Ray White."
Pennell said Ray White was working with the landlords "to ensure that they are not left out of pocket".
Sharma told the Herald he did not owe any money to landlords and would not comment any further.