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The benefits of being with Marram

There are plenty, we know this because you constantly say so.

In the last Marram beneficiary survey (2023), you were asked why you joined the Marram Community, why you stay in the community and how you benefit.

The holiday benefit works in many ways but perhaps the biggest in these days of pressure on household budgets, is the discount between Marram rentals and market rates. So it’s no surprise you said when you’re looking to book holiday accommodation, you go to the Marram website first because that’s where you’ll find the best rates and value for money.

If your first choice of location is unavailable, you may look at a Marram location close by, for example, Wellington South when the Wellington City apartments aren’t available.

Failing that, you’ll check out, Wotif or other accommodation booking sites.

Marram’s hard to beat

Using as a reference, we looked at how Marram stacks up against the rest.

• For a single night in a serviced, one or twobedroom apartment, Marram is 10 to 20 per cent less than market rates. If you stay two nights or more, then the discount becomes much greater as Marram will only charge you once for servicing and cleaning. A week in a Marram home is at a huge discount because the price caps at the weekly rate when five, six or seven nights are booked in one block.

• Looking at popular tourist destinations like Queenstown and Mt Maunganui, the discount is huge. A week in a Marram home may cost $480 for two bedrooms but 5x as much to go non-Marram, eg $2,500 to $4,000 for the same standard of accommodation elsewhere.

How does Marram do it?

Through the generous contributions of beneficiaries who’ve been donating to the Trust since 1944.

The Trust has invested in land, has no debt, no leases and is not paying commercial bank loans or lease fees like many motels. All you pay for is maintenance and refurbishment, cleaning, linen and electricity. The overheads are very low.

Marram has its own holiday accommodation booking app on its website at It doesn’t use a booking company so isn’t paying fees to someone else to operate a site.

CEO Glenn Clark says it’s a very efficient operation. “Marram’s been doing property management for decades.

We do around 30 refurbishments a year and buy in bulk, getting good discounts as a result. And most other accommodation providers are trying to make a profit. We’re not; Marram is not-for-profit.”

Value for money

“The original cottages were more of a bach experience, and over the years we’ve lifted them to be at least as good as motels,” he says.

“Again, in the Marram survey, beneficiaries now rank them as good or better than motels.”

The holiday homes are continually evolving but they’re still seen by the community as well-appointed, comfortable, very affordable homes away from home.

Recent changes have seen Wi-Fi installed and sustainability is now at the forefront of refurbishments.

Marram’s starting rolling out EV chargers and over the next five years, you’ll see the wireless broadband Wi-Fi replaced with fibre optic cable for an even faster internet experience.

Security will also be beefed up so people can feel as safe in a Marram home as they do in their own.

Budgets under pressure

The CEO says there’s no doubt there’s pressure on household budgets right now and no doubt Marram’s benefits are at their best.

He says holidaymakers are looking for value for money when it comes to their holiday accommodation and financial assistance for healthcare, and Marram’s still delivering that along with good old-fashioned service.

“We still answer the phone and reply to emails – a rare commodity.”

Moving forward

Marram has some very clear and consistent goals:

• Add more homes.

• Keep the quality of the homes to the standard we all expect.

• And keep healthcare benefits relevant to the needs of the community.

The challenges:

• To make sure beneficiaries are getting the most out of the Marram benefits in tough economic times.

• To keep Marram relevant – always including how it can help you control the household budget.

“Since 1944, Marram’s been there, and it’s times like these when it’s at its best.

There’s no catch. Marram’s been doing this for 78 years.” Glenn Clark.