Neighbour’s brutal note to new owners
A family who bought a home in a West Auckland suburb in New Zealand have been welcomed to the neighbourhood with an anonymous note labelling them "irresponsible vultures" for buying in the area.
The family shared their experience with their new community via Facebook, posting to a popular Avondale page to give their side of the story, NZ Herald reports.
They revealed that they had shifted into the area from nearby Waterview, wanting a home to bring up their family, and left the house unoccupied while they moved.
They installed an alarm in the property, which went off the day it was wired in, sounding continuously from 5pm and going all night until neighbours called police.
One neighbour was so incensed they delivered an anonymous note to the house, which left the new owners "gutted".
"Hey f***ing a**hole," the note began, "Our school-age children couldn't sleep because your irresponsible profit-seeking a** needs a few more dollars flipping a s***hole house in an already overpriced market.
"F*** you, you vulture."
The note was signed off: "Sincerely, your neighbours".
The admin of the page that shared the family's message said the story had brought him to tears, telling locals that "mistakes happen".
"Take a breath and try not to make assumptions," he wrote.
"This person is a new homeowner who is stretched to get a home for their family, not a speculator, as assumed by the writer of this note. You could be neighbours for a long time to come."
He shared a personal message from the homeowners, who wanted to remain anonymous.
The family said they were "greatly embarrassed that we've caused our neighbours unrest before we've even moved in" and that they were "gutted" by the note.
"We're a family with young children so I'm dismayed at causing someone else's children unrest. But also that we've had this welcome to the neighbourhood," the message read.
"I did go round and apologise to the neighbours to each side and behind our house and they were all lovely considering I must have caused them a sleepless night.
"Whoever wrote us this note caused a lot of hurt and we are not investors who've flipped anything but are a family who've signed on for a huge 30-year mortgage in this overpriced market in hope of owning somewhere to bring our kids up in.
"It was an awful situation that our alarm went off and I'm wholly apologetic but I don't think it warrants this note at all."
Avondale locals were quick to offer support to the family, advising them to ignore the anonymous note and welcoming them to the neighbourhood.
"What an absolutely awful thing to have hanging over the new homeowner when it should be an incredibly exciting time for them and their family," wrote one.
"I can't begin to imagine what sort of person would write something like this."
"We hope this hasn't put you off this wonderful neighbourhood that you're about to move into," another said.
"It is a beautiful & kind community, albeit this letter writer is an exception," they added.
The tension between renters and investors has been heightened after Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced a suite of housing reforms designed to cool the property market.
The Government will pour close to $4 billion into a scheme to accelerate the pace of new house builds, which is expected to help see "tens of thousands" of new properties built.
It is also doubling the capital gains tax-esque bright-line test from five to 10 years - meaning any gains on a residential property that is not a family home will be taxed if the property is sold within 10 years of purchase.
Meanwhile, the Government will get rid of the interest deductibility loophole - a rule that allows property owners to claim interest on loans used for residential properties as an expense against their income from those properties.
Landlord bosses expressed shock and dismay at the announcement to axe interest deductions on rental properties.
"What, so every other business in New Zealand can still claim tax deductions, but not landlords?" Andrew King, NZ Property Investors Federation president asked. "You're joking! This is just bizarre, it's crazy."
Green Party MP Chlöe Swarbrick spoke out in favour of renters and those who own a single property, writing in the Herald that framing property investors as "hardworking New Zealanders" ignored the struggle faced by the majority of New Zealanders to afford their home.
This article originally appeared on NZ Herald and was reproduced with permission
Originally published as Neighbour's brutal note to new owners