Healthy Homes Standards

The healthy homes standards aim is to make a significant change to the quality of New Zealand rental homes. The Standards aims are to cover improvements to heating, insulation, and ventilation, and fire alarms and addressing issues with moisture ingress and drainage and draught stopping.

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Ceiling and underfloor insulation has been compulsory in all rental homes since 1 July 2019, where it is reasonably practicable to install. Ceiling insulation installed before 1 July 2016 needs to be at least 120mm thick and needs minimum R-value of 2.9. Underfloor insulation needs a minimum R-value of 1.3. Some existing insulation in rental properties will need to be topped up or replaced.


Rental properties must have at least one door or window (including skylights) that opens to the outside in all bedrooms, dining rooms, living rooms, lounges and kitchens. The openable windows and doors must have a total area of at least five per cent of the floor area in each respective room. The windows or doors must be able to be fixed in the open position. All kitchens and bathrooms must have an extractor fan that ventilates externally.


All rental properties must have one or more fixed heaters, which can directly heat the main living room to at least 18°C and can maintain this temperature all year round. Certain heating devices that are inefficient, unaffordable or unhealthy will not meet the requirements of this standard.


Any gaps or holes in walls, ceilings, windows, floors and doors that cause noticeable draughts must be blocked. This includes all unused chimneys and fireplaces.


If the rental property has an enclosed subfloor, a ground moisture barrier must be installed if it is reasonably practicable to do so.


Rental properties must have efficient drainage for the removal of storm water, surface water and ground water, including an appropriate outfall. The drainage system must include gutters, downpipes and drains for the removal of water from the roof.