July is only a month away, so hopefully you’ve already ensured your insulation is up to the new national standards. But in case you haven’t gotten around to organising it yet, here’s what you need to know when it comes to insulation.
The Upcoming Change
As of July 2019, it will be compulsory for all rental properties that can take ceiling and underfloor insulation to have it installed. Landlords that do not comply could face fines of up to $4,000 paid to the tenants.
Last Minute Landlords Will Have Issues
We urge owners with properties requiring insulation to look into this sooner rather than later. As of late 2018, it's estimated over 100,000 rental properties nationwide require insulation; the industry can only cope with 50,000 until the deadline.
For specifics on minimum R-values you can view the tenancy services website here. Some properties are exempt if there are concrete floors, there is not enough space in the ceiling or underfloor, or it’s an apartment.
What Happens If My Rental Property Already Has Insulation?
If the property already has ceiling insulation which is at least 70mm thick and underfloor insulation, both are in good condition and there are no mould, gaps, or dampness, then the regulation is satisfied and no further action is needed.
Landlords who have installed new insulation since 2016 should already meet Insulation requirements. If you’re unsure, get in contact with the Sustainability Trust.
What’s the Risk of Not Installing Insulation?
Not installing insulation means you risk a fine of up to $4000 paid to the tenant, on top of the costs to install insulation. Long story short, it’s not worth the risk. The new insulation regulations and fine for not complying has been widely publicised both on social media and on posters around the city, so you’re unlikely to get away with not having insulation.
How Much Does Insulation Cost?
Landlords can often blow up the cost of insulation in their mind, making it seem more expensive than it actually is.
The cost of installing insulation depends on the size, shape and location of the building being insulated.
As a rough guide, however, EECA advises that the average cost of paying a professional installer to put in both ceiling and floor insulation is approximately $3,400 excluding GST for a 96m2 property. You should generally expect to pay more than that for a larger home.
For a reliable quote, book a Property Assessment with Sustainability Trust here. They also offer 0% interest 6 to 12 month repayment plans for insulation, heating, LED downlights and ventilation.
Even without considering the new regulations, insulation is well worth the money.
It creates a warmer, more comfortable home, making your property more attractive, and can encourage tenants to stay longer, which is why our Wellington Property Managers have always promoted it to our clients. For more information on Insulation in rental properties visit the Sustainability Trust website www.sustaintrust.org.nz
If you’d like more advice on property investing, learn about our management processes, or to receive a free rental appraisal, contact one of our Wellington Property Management offices.