Waipiro Bay leaseholders 'blindsided' by 400 percent hike on annual fees

Ruatoria, Te Araroa and Tokomaru Bay leases have also been affected.

Ruatoria, Te Araroa and Tokomaru Bay leases have also been affected.

Waipiro Bay file photo

Property owners at Waipiro Bay have been left “blindsided” after annual fees on their leased land increased by about 400 percent for this year.

A property owner of 30 years says she and her husband lease four sections of land at Waipiro Bay and one section has buildings on it.

She could not believe it when she read their lease had gone up from $1200 a year to $5200.

“It was quite a shock. They back-dated it six months as well.”

Her husband said they were “blindsided”.

A couple on a fixed income moved out of their rented home at Waipiro Bay because the weekly rent doubled overnight — from $200 to $400 — which they found unaffordable.

Another building owner surrendered his lease at Waipiro Bay and walked away because the potential land return was less than the lease rental.

The leased land is managed by Te Tumu Paeroa — an organisation that administers the leases on behalf of landowners.

Ruatoria, Te Araroa and Tokomaru Bay leases have also been affected.

Te Tumu Paeroa collects rent, deducts an administration fee, then gives the balance to landowners.

The building owners have 21-year leases on the land, with rent reviews every seven years.

The Waipiro Bay property owners called Te Tumu Paeroa to ask why there had been such a hefty increase.

“They told me the reason was to bring it in line with national prices.

“We have lodged an objection, as other people have, and we are just waiting to see.”

Their land is owned by multiple parties, some descendants of the Williams family, and there are others from Maori families as well.

The list of names of the landowners is huge as the land has been passed down from generation to generation.

“I also asked why it had been back-dated, and they said because that’s when the rent should have gone up.”

The property owner was concerned the high lease cost would devalue their property and make it hard if they ever wanted to on-sell the lease and house on it.

Another couple have leased three sections at Waipiro Bay since about 1993.

At first, the increases were very reasonable, the property owner said.

“Then they decided to push it. They doubled it about seven years ago, which was from $400 to $800.

“We weren’t happy but we paid it. But this last increase was from $800 to $2600.

“On this piece of land we lease, there is no drainage, no facilities. All they are charging us for is the land only, not the buildings.

“My point is, it is unfair. It is not reasonable.

“If we were in Queenstown, and we had infrastructure, yes, maybe.

“But when you are out in the wop-wops and they offer you absolutely nothing . . ?”

“This is where we come from. This is where my parents and grandparents are buried, this is where we belong. We are not outsiders.

“My concern is when we retire, we will not be able to afford it. So where do you go?”

Te Tumu Paeroa sent registered valuers, without the lease owners’ knowledge, to allegedly walk over the property and value the sections.

The building owners knew nothing about it and were not informed.

“And guess what? They can review it again in seven years and it could go up again.”

Property owners at Waipiro Bay have been left “blindsided” after annual fees on their leased land increased by about 400 percent for this year.

A property owner of 30 years says she and her husband lease four sections of land at Waipiro Bay and one section has buildings on it.

She could not believe it when she read their lease had gone up from $1200 a year to $5200.

“It was quite a shock. They back-dated it six months as well.”

Her husband said they were “blindsided”.

A couple on a fixed income moved out of their rented home at Waipiro Bay because the weekly rent doubled overnight — from $200 to $400 — which they found unaffordable.

Another building owner surrendered his lease at Waipiro Bay and walked away because the potential land return was less than the lease rental.

The leased land is managed by Te Tumu Paeroa — an organisation that administers the leases on behalf of landowners.

Ruatoria, Te Araroa and Tokomaru Bay leases have also been affected.

Te Tumu Paeroa collects rent, deducts an administration fee, then gives the balance to landowners.

The building owners have 21-year leases on the land, with rent reviews every seven years.

The Waipiro Bay property owners called Te Tumu Paeroa to ask why there had been such a hefty increase.

“They told me the reason was to bring it in line with national prices.

“We have lodged an objection, as other people have, and we are just waiting to see.”

Their land is owned by multiple parties, some descendants of the Williams family, and there are others from Maori families as well.

The list of names of the landowners is huge as the land has been passed down from generation to generation.

“I also asked why it had been back-dated, and they said because that’s when the rent should have gone up.”

The property owner was concerned the high lease cost would devalue their property and make it hard if they ever wanted to on-sell the lease and house on it.

Another couple have leased three sections at Waipiro Bay since about 1993.

At first, the increases were very reasonable, the property owner said.

“Then they decided to push it. They doubled it about seven years ago, which was from $400 to $800.

“We weren’t happy but we paid it. But this last increase was from $800 to $2600.

“On this piece of land we lease, there is no drainage, no facilities. All they are charging us for is the land only, not the buildings.

“My point is, it is unfair. It is not reasonable.

“If we were in Queenstown, and we had infrastructure, yes, maybe.

“But when you are out in the wop-wops and they offer you absolutely nothing . . ?”

“This is where we come from. This is where my parents and grandparents are buried, this is where we belong. We are not outsiders.

“My concern is when we retire, we will not be able to afford it. So where do you go?”

Te Tumu Paeroa sent registered valuers, without the lease owners’ knowledge, to allegedly walk over the property and value the sections.

The building owners knew nothing about it and were not informed.

“And guess what? They can review it again in seven years and it could go up again.”

Te Tumu Paeroa’s response

Te Tumu Paeroa communications and marketing manager Sara Passmore says the leases in question are subject to the Maori Reserved Lands Amendment Act 1997, which determines that rent is only reviewed to market once in every seven years.

“This can mean rentals can increase significantly from the last rent review. Rental adjustments are supported by determinations of registered valuers.

“The legislation provides a process for resolving objections and most objections are successfully resolved.

“The Maori Trustee acts in the best interests of the Maori owners of the land to achieve a market rental for the Maori owners.

“Tenants of this tenure of land are in the unique position of being able to perpetually renew their leases every 21 years.

“This ensures both their security of tenure and strong market in which to sell their leasehold interest.”

What they charge:

Te Tumu Paeroa charge a base trustee fee of $1475 (plus GST = $1696), a property management fee of 7.5 percent (plus GST) of the gross rental of the lease, which covers rent collection, rent reviews, lease renewals and tenancy management. Based on these costs taken from Te Tumu Paeroa’s website, of the $5200 now being charged for the Waipiro Bay sections mentioned, 40 percent of that (or $2145) would go direct to Te Tumu Paeroa.

Additional costs on top of that include a 2.5 percent distribution administration fee on the gross value of any distribution to owners, disbursements (such as court application fees), any additional meetings at $520 (plus GST) a time, and $198 an hour for an advisory trustee change, which is for the appointment or removal of advisory trustees. A copy of the report by mail costs $15, electronic reports are free.

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Joanne - 20 days ago
Land owners, lease holders, tenants are all being ripped off! The only ones that are gaining quite a considerable amount is Te Tumu Paeroa.
Te Tumu Paeroa collects money for what?! What do the landowners, community and the area get of their so-called services? They take 40 percent-plus out of annual leases, for what?
Te Tumu Paeroa increased leases by over 400 percent basically in one hit, because they haven't since 1997? There is no infrastructure in Waipiro. If it wasn't for the GDC there would be literally no access to Waipiro!
There has been no property inspections to warrant the 7.5 percent management fees.
Court costs? Where, when and why?
Advisory fee? What advice do they give and who do they advise?

Michelle, Auckland - 15 days ago
Corporate bullying.....

Millie - 10 days ago
Te Tumu Paeroa is not needed! Land owners have to take back control! Bugger having the Government telling us what to do (and pay???) with our land. Make a stand against Te Tumu Paeroa. Eradication!!!

Michelle Wanoa - 10 days ago
Landowner shareholders on these block of lands where leases are paid should all come together and support our whanau in these situations, and stop their land being administered by an organisation like Te Tumu Paeroa. They don't maintain the land and not all shareholders are getting a return on the land. This is happening here in Te Araroa as well. We need to all agree as shareholders for Te Tumu Paeroa to pull out of managing and administering on behalf of shareholders - leave our whanau alone, they are taking better care of the land as is it is. It's time that we as shareholders have our say and take control of what is rightfully ours.

James Solomon, Taupo - 10 days ago
Te Tumu Paeroa are leeches for the government.

Cole Smith, Burleigh Heads - 10 days ago
Keep speaking up whanau, they need to be sorted.

Peter Jones - 8 days ago
Teach you all to think agenda 21 is a conspiracy theory and that Maori have a get out of jail free card. A bunch of freeloaders have corporatised themselves and are directing your self destruction for the benefit of all Maori ... apparently.

Ewa Marshall-Kopua - 7 days ago
All those land blocks mentioned have my nanny's name on them . . . and we live in hovels . . . that's colonisation for you . . . I have already sent a very strongly worded letter to Te Tumu Land Grabbers inc. and will be marching down to see them on Monday morning... in Featherston street.

Lizz - 6 days ago
Looks like a wind up to me, no more Te Tumu Paeroa in the future? Or maybe they're sniffing a property boom and cashing up in anticipation. Big city wealth coming to one of the most untouched, unspoiled and beautiful parts of New Zealand that still has a high percentage of whenua in multiple ownership and whanau ownership.

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