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By Katrina Green

Whilst it may still seem a long way away it is creeping up fast and the suppliers of insulation products, and the installers, are warning that if you leave it too late there will be a shortage of both product and labour.

Another thing to consider is that by now we are required to be providing a very thorough statement of insulation, or there are potential consequences.

We have worked through the bulk of our portfoilo of properties, and most of you will have received a free insulation report which will have advised you whether your current insulation is up to the new standards or not.  And I know that there are a lot of properties which do need an update so I will be going through these reports in the next few weeks and will contact you directly.

I have been researching the matter thoroughly and on Monday met with a company – Warm Fuzzies, who came highly recommended.  What they do is visit the property to provide an assessment, which comes complete with photos, and they send through five individual quotes from different companies.  All of this comes at the cost of just $50 plus GST – which I think is a very good price.

So what are the consequences?

I have heard of nine recent cases where landlords have been fined by the Tenancy Tribunal, between $100 and $500 in exemplary damages, just for not having a correct insulation statement with their tenancy agreement.  And who gets the money? You guessed it – the tenant!

I have also just learnt that the maximum fine for not meeting the new requirements from 1st July 2019 could result in a fine of up to $4000, and again this money will be awarded to the tenants.  Crazy – I know – but what the Government are encouraging is for tenants to dob non complying landlords in, and it will work!

So again I cannot reiterate strongly enough the importance of taking this seriously, and while it may seem a big scary exercise, remember that every landlord in NZ is having to do this, and so despite the Government saying it will not cause rents to increase, of course it will – which means next year we will be looking hard at all of the rents and they will be increasing to assist in covering some of the extra costs.

I have attached a link to an article which talks more about this subject if you want to take a look.

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