Auckland housing: For $370 a week you can shower and poo in the same spot

Auckland's dire emergency housing situation has been illustrated in a shocking photo of a toilet installed in a shower cubicle at a west Auckland property.

Support worker Barney Kuki-Wikitera shared the photo of the cramped conditions on Facebook on June 13.

"The picture below just sent me over the top - I walked into this unit and I see a toilet in a shower... You expecting fams to crap and shower in the same spot?" he wrote.

"For the low price of $370.00 you'd expect better."

The bizarre shower-loo.
The bizarre shower-loo. Photo credit: Barney Kuki-Wikitera/Facebook

Mr Kuki-Wikitera helps people reintegrate back into the community after spending time in prison, and helps find them housing.

The unit was 6m by 4m he said, and he knows people can get accommodation with separate amenities for the same price.

He says families getting Work and Income help are being preyed upon by landlords.

"Why the hell did we turn a dire necessity into a commodity?" he wrote in the Facebook post.

A quick Trade Me search showed a one-bedroom unit for $350, but the advertiser was asking for a professional person as a tenant, he said.

"If you know anything about accommodation in Auckland, that means if you have a WINZ membership you got no chance.

"Financially being in this unit is going to be a struggle as my whanau is on a WINZ benefit and with all his entitlements, after paying the rent he won't have anything to live on. We'll be working hard to find him suitable accommodation in this area."

He said they could complain to Auckland Council or go to the Tenancy Tribunal but they don't want to "rock the boat" for fear of losing the accommodation and being blacklisted.

"In saying that there are some landlords and property managers who have delivered - they have trusted us to give whanau... accommodation worth living in. But they have been few and far between."

The Government's Budget, announced in May, includes $175.1 million over the next four years for emergency and transitional housing, which was first announced last year.

In March, the quarterly Social Housing Quarterly Report was released, showing that accommodation waiting times were down.

The report showed 9218 emergency housing special needs grants were paid to 2616 clients, totalling $8.8m.