Insulation Standards - is your property meeting them?

Updated: Feb 4

As you probably know by now, the five Healthy Homes standards were made law on 1 July 2019. These five standards cover heating, ventilation, insulation, moisture ingress and drainage, and draught stopping in rental properties.

We've published articles on ventilation standards and heating standards, so we're here to give you some more information on insulation standards.

What's required?

If you live in a rental property, your home must have underfloor and ceiling insulation that is up to current standards. Insulation stops heat from escaping from the house, and so the better insulated a home is, the more it will retain heat.

Insulation that is up to standards means a far healthier home for you and your family. It also means it will usually cost less to heat the property, the property will be drier, and the property will be less prone to mould.

If your insulation was installed after 1 July 2016, your insulation should meet these new standards. If you have existing insulation, it must still be in reasonable condition to meet the requirements. This means there should be no mould, dampness, damage or gaps.

Exemptions to the insulation standard

There are three specific insulation exemptions and with the help of Tenancy.govt we've given a brief overview of these exceptions.

1. Access is impracticable or unsafe

Some areas of some homes may be unsafe or not reasonably practicable to access. This may be due to:

  • their design

  • limited access

  • potential for substantial damage

  • health and safety reasons.

There is an exemption for parts of homes where a professional installer is unable to access and/or insulate, until this becomes possible (for example when a property is re‑roofed).

2. Partial exemption for certain underfloor insulation

If the rental home has existing underfloor insulation that was installed when the home was built or converted. This insulation must still be in reasonable condition. Landlords must have a copy of any compliance documents that shows the home met the requirements of the time. For example:

  • code compliance certificate

  • certificate of acceptance

  • another relevant compliance document.

3. Ceilings and floors with other habitable spaces directly above or below The third exemption applies to areas of ceilings or floors where there are other habitable spaces directly above or below. This might be another floor of the same property or another apartment. These areas do not require insulation to meet the healthy homes insulation standard.

These three exemptions are in addition to the general exemptions.

There is a range of technical R values and insulation terms that you may not understand or know for yourself without an in-depth check, but that's where we can help. A QSPlus property inspector can come in and do a Healthy Homes report to check your home is up to standards. Get in touch with us and let us know if we can give you a guide on how your home fits within these standards.

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