A laundry that was listed on Trade Me as a bedroom to rent for $80 has caused an uproar.

The laundry in Welcome Bay, Tauranga, was listed on the site on July 6 for $80 per week. Images loaded to the listing show a single bed lining one side of the room, with the other side occupied by a washing machine, laundry sink and a cupboard.

The washing machine is only used on Saturday mornings, according to the advertiser.

A potential renter would only need to pay for their food and toiletries.


Amenities in the home included large gardens with avocados, a spa and "all mod cons".

The listing has been removed.

The other side of the laundry.
The other side of the laundry.

Trade Me's head of trust and safety, George Hiotakis, said it was important for members listing a room in their house to be honest so everyone was on the same page and did not waste anyone's time.

"The seller looks to have been very upfront with the images and description of the property, which is what we ask of all our members.

"Renting a laundry room definitely won't be everyone's cup of tea."

Hiotakis said Trade Me recommended prospective tenants ask questions, check out the seller's feedback, and go and check the accommodation out for themselves so everyone had their eyes wide open from the beginning.

The median market rent in Pyes Pa/Hairini/Welcome Bay this month is $500, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Tenancy Services website.

The listing has angered many people on social media who claim the advertiser is taking advantage of desperate people in a tough housing market.


However, the advertiser has also attracted support from others who said the laundry looked clean, tidy and adequate for someone who did not need much space.

John Gibson, housing services manager with Tauranga Community Housing Trust, said from the organisation's point of view, a laundry is not adequate housing.

"It's not suitable or sustainable.

"It goes to show the lack of options available for people."

Gibson said anyone with an unmet housing need needed to contact Work and Income, "which would be a much better option".

SociaLink board member Tessa Mackenzie said the laundry listing was a reflection of Tauranga's housing need.

"At least that is someone that could potentially not be sleeping on the street. But then it's not appropriate housing."

Changes to rental legislation had compounded housing availability issues as some landlords had chosen to sell up rather than spending money to get their properties up to the new standard, she said.

"One of the issues is there aren't a lot of alternatives that meet the requirements."

Mackenzie said there had been a lot of talk about what could be done to address Tauranga's housing issues, but "not a lot of actual action to address it".

Tauranga's housing need

• 1700 social homes needed in Tauranga to bring it in line with the rest of NZ

• 62 per cent growth in the number of people on the WBOP social housing register in 2018

• 280 families on Accessible Properties' wait list

Source: SociaLink