Paul Brockie from Absolute Energy says they have been slammed since the new rental insulation regulations came into force on July 1. Photo: Ishna Jacobs.

Lax landlords create insulation backlog

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A local insulation installer is frustrated that the lack of uptake from Nelson landlords to insulate their rentals has led to a backlog – despite them having plenty of warning.

From July 1, ceiling and underfloor insulation must be installed in all rentals, where possible. Failure to comply may lead to a fine of up to $4,000 for landlords with penalties of up to $1000 for property managers.

Landlords were given a generous three-year grace period to meet the requirements, after the last National government passed the law change in response to concerns that many rentals did not provide warm, dry and safe accommodation.

But owner of Absolute Energy, Paul Brockie, says despite having three years, many Nelson landlords left it until the last minute.

So far, they have insulated over 2000 rentals in the region to meet the new legislation and have been “consistently busy” with plenty of pressure from landlords trying to comply by June 30.

“Some property managers have been as frustrated as us with the lack of uptake from landlords when this Act was introduced three years ago,” says Paul.

“We tried all sorts of things to encourage landlords to make an early decision and while lots of landlords are awesome and did, lots put their heads in the sand hoping it would go away.”

Paul says although they now have a backlog, people have been understanding.

To date, the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment has received six calls seeking advice on insulation from Nelson with only one breach being reported to the Tenancy Tribunal since July 1.

Meanwhile, Paul says his advice to landlords whose rentals are still not up to standard is to get your property assessed, get a quote and make a decision.