Healthy homes standards – new laws for landlords and tenants

Jatin Patel

Owning a rental property in New Zealand is still a fantastic investment option however if you are a landlord or landlady you must know the recent changes in legislation called The healthy homes standards. Here, BUSINESS buddy investigates what these new standards mean for residential property investors and tenants.

Healthy homes standards – new laws for landlords and tenants

There are tax implications for property investors working towards the healthy homes standards.

“Gone are the days were damp, cold, leaky homes will be tolerated,” says BUSINESS buddy director Jatin Patel.

“Landlords are responsible for maintaining and improving the quality of their rental properties.

“The healthy homes standards introduce minimum standards for heating, insulation, ventilation, moisture and drainage, and draught stopping in rental properties.”

Healthy homes standards timeline for property investors

There are four important dates property investors need to know with regards to the healthy homes standards.

From July 1, 2019

·        Ceiling and underfloor insulation is compulsory in all rental homes where it is reasonably practicable to install.

·         Landlords must sign a statement of intent to comply with the healthy homes standards in any new, varied or renewed tenancy agreement.

From July 1, 2020  

·        Landlords must include a statement of their current level of compliance with the healthy homes standards in any new, varied or renewed tenancy agreement.

From July 1, 2021

·         Private property investors and landlords must ensure their rental properties comply with the healthy homes standards within 90 days of any new, or renewed, tenancy.

From July 1, 2024

·         All rental residential properties must comply with the healthy homes standards.


Rental property healthy homes heating standard

The new heating standard requires rental properties to have one or more fixed heater that can directly heat the main living room to a maintained temperature of at least 18 degrees Celsius.

Thus, ensuring the rental property has a warm and comfortable living environment.

Rental property healthy homes insulation standard

From July 1 2019, ceiling and underfloor insulation is compulsory in all rental homes.

Rental property healthy homes ventilation standard

The ventilation standard states rental homes must have windows that can open in the living room, dining room, kitchen and bedrooms. Kitchens and bathrooms must have extractor fans.

Rental property healthy homes moisture and drainage standard

Rental properties must now have efficient drainage for the removal of storm water, surface water and ground water. Properties with an enclosed sub-floor space must have a ground moisture barrier.

Rental property healthy homes draught stopping standard

No one likes a draughty home, the new draught stopping standard requires landlords to make sure the property doesn’t have significant gaps or holes in walls, ceilings, windows, skylights, floors and doors.   If you have an unused open fireplace in your property, it must be closed off or the chimney must be blocked to prevent draughts.

For full details on the new changes click here.

If you would like further information on the healthy homes standards or if you would like to arrange an appointment to discuss the tax implications of property investment, please contact BUSINESS buddy on 0800 283 399 or email jatin@businessbuddy.co.nz.

Jatin Patel