New Zealand’s Housing and Urban Development Minister – Phil Twyford – released the Government’s ‘Healthy Homes’ minimum standards for rental properties. It’s all about ensuring all New Zealanders have a warm, dry home that complies with the 2008 Building Code standards.
As a landlord and rental property owner, you might be thinking – what does this mean for you? With the new standards’ requirements for heating, insulation, ventilation, moisture, and drainage, all landlords should review their rental properties to ensure they comply.
WHAT ARE THE NEW STANDARDS?
Under the new ‘Healthy Homes’ standards, all rental properties will be required to have the following:
- Ceiling and underfloor insulation that meets the 2008 Building Code insulation standard, or (for existing ceiling insulation) has a minimum thickness of 120mm.
- A heater that can heat the main living area to 18oC.
- Extraction fans or range hoods in kitchens and bathrooms in a bid to make properties drier.
- A ground moisture barrier installed if a property has an enclosed subfloor space to stop moisture rising into the home.
- Adequate drainage and guttering to prevent water from entering the home.
- Draughts that make a home harder to heat blocked.
Tenancy.govt.nz has stated that the ceiling and underfloor insulation requirements are compulsory in all rental homes from 1 July 2019. If landlords don’t comply with the regulations from this date, they will be committing an unlawful act and may be liable for a penalty of up to $4,000.
And from 1 July 2021, all private landlords must ensure that their rental properties must comply with all the healthy home standards within 90 days of any new tenancy.
WHAT DO LANDLORDS NEED TO DO?
First things first, you’ll want to assess your current insulation. Start by physically looking in your ceiling cavity and underfloor area to see its current condition. Chances are, you probably aren’t quite sure what to look for. In this case, you’ll need to hire a professional to do an assessment and make a judgment on whether it complies with the standards.
Our CosyWall Insulation experts can help you determine whether your rental property’s insulation is up to standard. If you find that your current insulation isn’t meeting the requirements, you must install quality ceiling and underfloor insulation, wherever possible. It must comply with the regulations and be safely installed.
WHY SHOULD YOU INSULATE YOUR RENTAL PROPERTY?
Insulation can help keep your rental property warm, dry and comfortable for your tenants. A well-insulated home can reduce the amount of energy it needs for heat, and also reduces condensation and moisture that builds up within a home. This helps keep your property in good condition and makes it a more healthy space for your tenants.
For more advice and information about insulating your rental property, contact us today.