• Tony Liu

Insulation and Smoke Alarms for All Rental Properties


Housing Minister Nick Smith announced plans  to strengthen residential tenancy laws, including requirements for landlords to provide smoke alarms and insulation. We will tell you the important two things in this blog today.

1.All rental properties must be insulated by July 2019, though exemptions apply to properties where it is physically impractical to retrofit insulation.

What are the Insulation standards?

  1. Ceiling insulation (minimum thickness of 70 mm) must cover all applicable habitable spaces (i.e. spaces used for daily activities), excluding spaces required around downlights and flues (another property immediately above counts as ceiling insulation)

  2. A suspected subfloor must have underfloor insulation in reasonable condition, covering all applicable habitable spaces (a concrete slab counts as underfloor insulation, as does a garage or another property immediately above).

We checked to insulation companies if we will need to insulate to walls as well, however it is not necessary so far. This is a big good point for all of owners.

How to Install Earthwool Glasswool: Ceiling Insulation

<a href="https://youtu.be/0jDl9Kif-hY"><img src="https://i.ytimg.com/vi/0jDl9Kif-hY/0.jpg" alt="" width="420" height="295" /></a>

Watch this video on YouTube.

☆How to Install Earthwool Glasswool: Underfloor Insulation

<a href="https://youtu.be/eVQL4WqkW8E"><img src="https://i.ytimg.com/vi/eVQL4WqkW8E/0.jpg" alt="" width="420" height="295" /></a>

Watch this video on YouTube.

2.Smoke alarms must be installed in all rentals from July 2016, but tenants will be responsible for replacing batteries and notifying landlords of defects.

What are the Smoke alarm standards?

  1. The new smoke alarm standards required a minimum of one working smoke alarm in a hall or similar area, within 3m of each bedroom door.

  2. In self-contained sleep-outs or caravans, at least one working smoke alarm would be needed, in line with Fire Service recommendations.

180,000 New Zealand homes required insulation and 120,000 homes needed smoke alarms. The Government said the average cost of retrofitting both ceiling and floor insulation was about $3300.

Landlords could apply for a subsidy through the “Warm up New Zealand: Healthy Homes” scheme, but funding for that programme was only guaranteed to run till next June.

What is the criteria for government funded insulation?

  1. Home built before 1st January 2000

  2. Have a valid Community Services Card

  3. Own your own home or rent privately (NOT a housing New Zealand home)

  4. Have someone over 65 or under 17 living in the home

The Cabinet paper showed properties sold and immediately rented back to the former owner-occupier for up to 12 months would be exempt from the new laws.

Properties a landlord intended demolishing or substantially rebuilding within 12 months of a tenancy starting could also be exempt, as long as landlords provided evidence of relevant resource or building consent.

Japan Homes can introduce excellent Insulation companies to you, please feel free to ask us anytime.

Our free call is 0800 00 5055.

They recommend to owners to do this earlier, not later, as there may be issues with sourcing enough insulation or labour later.

Ref: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11478193

Government announcement PDF↓