Auckland sleeping pods may have been illegal

Auckland sleeping pods may have been illegal
Photo credit: Ray White Real Estate

Ray White Real Estate has pulled down an ad for $200-a-week sleeping pods in Auckland city, which may have been against local bylaws.

A Trade Me listing for the rooms went live on Tuesday afternoon, with a Ray White agent describing them as a "unique living opportunity".

"Live in a prime inner city location for a fraction of the cost!" the advertisement read.

"These state of the art pods include internet connection and a flat screen TV as well as secure swipe card access. Each pod comes with its own locker too."

Photos on the listing appear to show eight pods up for grabs in the apartment, which was previously leased by Ray White as a one-bedroom studio for $535 per week in total.

Auckland sleeping pods may have been illegal
Photo credit: Ray White Real Estate

If all eight of the pods were leased, it would amount to nearly $1600 per week for the same space.

The listing was removed within the day and it's since emerged the living situation may not be legal.

According to Auckland Council's hostels bylaw, if a room is smaller than 4.5sq m, it's too small to be rented as a bedroom for someone.

In the same bylaw, a boarding house - where a tenant rents just a room - requires five or more tenants to share the property. The Trade Me ad for the pods said just three tenants would share the communal areas.

Auckland Council's Penny Pirrit, director of regulatory services, told Newshub it's an "unusual situation" the council hasn't come across before.

"With that in mind, we will investigate this further to determine whether the pods, and how they were being advertised, breach any Building Code, resource consent or Auckland Unitary Plan rules," she said.

Auckland sleeping pods may have been illegal
Photo credit: Ray White Real Estate

It's not yet sure how this situation differs from hostels, which will also advertise single beds on Trade Me as "one bedroom".

When Newshub asked the Ray White agent why the pod listing was removed on Tuesday, she refused to answer.

"The listing was withdrawn from our website and I have no comment," she said.

Ray White management has been approached for comment.

Newshub.

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