|dc.description.abstract||Private boarding houses in New Zealand exist in multiple social and planning contexts, and house a variety of tenants, often with a high level of need and vulnerability. They fulfil a need by providing affordable single room occupancy accommodation, however international research suggests that the boarding house living environment can have detrimental outcomes for some tenants. Presently there is minimal regulation of boarding houses in New Zealand compared to many other developed countries and there are concerns in some quarters about the living environment. Allegations of substandard conditions and exploitation of tenants have come to the attention of social service organisations and the media. These concerns have been acknowledged at central and local government level, but planning and regulatory changes to address them have been slow in coming.
This research identifies problems and issues that characterise private boarding houses in the case study areas of Dunedin and Auckland, and examines how they are being addressed through planning and regulation. A Qualitative methodology has been employed for this study. The main sources of data for the research were obtained through interviews with key informants, supported by a literature review.
The primary research from this study validates much of what was uncovered in international literature on boarding houses. Among the residents of this accommodation type, there can be a high proportion of consumers of mental health services, people with addictions, former prisoners and people with a range of vulnerabilities. Boarding houses tend to exist at the lower end of the rental market and some premises operate in breach of regulations such as, building, fire safety and environmental health standards.
The research findings showed some contrasting trends between boarding houses in the Auckland and Dunedin case study areas, most significantly, the implications of Auckland’s buoyant housing market compared to the stable housing market conditions of Dunedin. The Research in Auckland suggests that boarding house tenants there have fewer accommodation choices, and are more likely to live in unsafe, unsanitary and overcrowded conditions than those in Dunedin. The findings from this research inform a range of recommendations for addressing the issues that can arise form boarding houses.||