Smoke alarms and in­su­la­tion nec­es­sary

Kapi-Mana News - - OUT & ABOUT - ALAN KNOWSLEY


From July 1, all ten­an­cies must have smoke alarms in each sleep­ing space or within 3 me­tres of the main en­trance of any sleep­ing space. Also there must be at least one smoke alarm on each storey of the build­ing.

The alarms must be in full work­ing or­der with no faults, de­fects or dam­age. They must be in­stalled in ac­cor­dance with the man­u­fac­turer’s in­struc­tions and not be past their re­place­ment date. Un­less the alarms are hard wired, they must state their re­place­ment date.

Alarms must be the photo- elec­tric type, meet spec­i­fied stan­dards and con­tain com­pli­ant bat­ter­ies. Hard-wired alarms must be con­nected to the elec­tri­cal supply.

Ten­ants are re­spon­si­ble for re­plac­ing the bat­ter­ies in res­i­dences. When a new ten­ant comes into a prop­erty the land­lord must en­sure the bat­tery is cur­rent.

Ten­ants are also re­spon­si­ble for re­plac­ing the alarm bat­tery in Board­ing Houses if the alarm is in their bed­room. Alarms out­side of bed­rooms must be re­placed by the Board­ing House land­lord.

De­spite alarms be­ing life­sav­ing, there are no rules re­quir­ing them in pri­vately owned and oc­cu­pied homes.

Some alarms are avail­able now that have a 10 year bat­tery life so there is no changing of bat­ter­ies. The whole alarm is re­placed at the end of the 10 years.

This avoids the prob­lem of for­get­ting to re­place bat­ter­ies ev­ery year.


For in­come-re­lated rent ten­an­cies, for ex­am­ple Hous­ing NZ and com­mu­nity hous­ing, the new in­su­la­tion reg­u­la­tions also take ef­fect from July 1. For other ten­an­cies the reg­u­la­tions come in on July 1, 2019.

From those dates ten­an­cies must have ceil­ing and un­der floor in­su­la­tion that meets cer­tain stan­dards.

In­su­la­tion is needed in the ceil­ing and un­der the floor, un­less


If you have a le­gal in­quiry you would like dis­cussed in this col­umn please email Alan on aknowsley@rain­ey­ there is an­other hab­it­able space above or be­low the ceil­ing or floor.

The in­su­la­tion has to cover the en­tire ceil­ing or un­der­floor, un­less there is equip­ment in those spa­ces that needs a clear­ance from the in­su­la­tion.

The reg­u­la­tions cover the rea­son­able con­di­tion of the in­su­la­tion, for ex­am­ple it can’t be com­pro­mised by dam­age or de­te­ri­o­ra­tion. If the in­su­la­tion is not com­pli­ant then it must be re­placed or up­graded.

An ex­emp­tion ex­ists if the land­lord in­tends to de­mol­ish or re­build the ten­ancy within a year and has ap­plied for a re­source or build­ing con­sent and the ap­pli­ca­tion has not been re­jected.

The ex­emp­tion will lapse af­ter 12 months or if the build­ing con­sent lapses or is with­drawn.

Ten­ants can ask to see ev­i­dence of the build­ing or re­source con­sent and the ex­emp­tion will ex­pire if the proof is not sup­plied within 10 work­ing days of the re­quest.

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