Here’s what the government expects of you, as a landlord. If it’s all a bit confusing, we are here to help you out.
The Healthy Homes Standards originated from government research into the link between the well-being and health of the tenants and rental property standards in New Zealand. The research showed that warmer and drier houses had less mould and mildew. As a consequence, the tenants’ health improved.
With 600,000 New Zealand households living in rental properties, that research got the government’s attention. After all, 600,000 families are a considerable amount. With the cost of health issues related to cold and damp houses that would trickle down to the public health system, healthy rentals became a priority.
Most landlords can see this and are more than willing to do their share to look after the families living in their rentals. But it’s not just a win for the tenants. Warm, well ventilated, and dry homes have considerably fewer maintenance issues in the longer term than their ignored counterparts.
What do the Healthy Homes Standards mean for Insulation?
Do you need to make any changes to your rental property?
The previous 2016 regulations required that existing insulation in rentals had to meet certain R-values. On top of that, the insulation had to be ‘in reasonable condition’. If any of these boxes were not ticked, new insulation needed to be installed by 1st July 2019. However, rental properties built before 2008 that already had some form of insulation received some leeway. But those were the rules before 1 July 2019.
In 2019, The Healthy Homes Insulation Standard stepped up those minimum requirements. If your rental did not need new insulation under the 2016 standards, it would now need a ceiling insulation ‘top-up’ or new underfloor insulation.
So if you’re a landlord who had insulation installed in 2016, you’re probably still fine as it would remain in a good condition for a few years.
What are the new Healthy Home Standards?
Healthy Homes Standards for Underfloor insulation
- Most concrete floors do not need underfloor insulation
- Timber floors of a domestic living area must have underfloor insulation with an R-value of at least 1.3.
There is some exemption for draped foil insulation in houses built between 1978 and 2016 as long as it’s not ripped, damaged, or no longer shiny.
Healthy Homes Standards for ceiling insulation
- The minimum R-value of ceiling insulation depends on the climate zone you live in.
- OR the existing ceiling insulation must be at least 120mm thick.
- Insulation must be in reasonable condition. This means that compared to the time of installation, the thickness should not be reduced by over 30%.
What can Total House do to help you?
From 1 December 2020, a compliance document has to be included with any new or renewing tenancy agreement. If you need to get your rental up to scratch to meet the new Healthy Homes standards, we’re fired up and ready to…
- Do the Healthy Homes Rental Inspection and Report (this service is only available at Total House Auckland). We’ll identify any compliance issues and summarise them in the report.
- Install your ceiling and underfloor insulation according to the Healthy Homes Standards. We choose all our product brands for their quality. They also come with a 50-year manufacturer’s warranty.
Total House installs home insulation from a number of leading insulation suppliers, including:
- High-quality glass-wool underfloor and ceiling insulation from Bradford Insulation
- Mammoth, New Zealand made polyester insulation, made from recycled plastic bottles
- Earthwool, made from recycled glass bottles and natural products
- Greenstuff, Made in New Zealand and accepted as a suitable product by Asthma New Zealand.
Have a chat with our friendly expert team about how we can help you best!