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Thread: New rules mean warmer homes

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    MotherBear's Avatar
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    Thumbs up New rules mean warmer homes

    Insulation rules to mean warmer homes
    By PAUL EASTON - The Dominion Post | Wednesday, 31 October 2007

    New rules will boost "woefully inadequate" insulation standards, but they mean homes will cost more to build.

    Building Code changes taking effect in much of the country today require better roof and wall insulation, with double glazing used in most new homes.

    "This is the most significant change to energy-efficiency regulations in 30 years," said Building Minister Clayton Cosgrove.

    About 30 per cent less energy would be needed to keep homes warm. That should lead to fewer people getting sick, and less time off work and school.

    Building a medium-sized home in Wellington will cost between $3000 and $5000 more. But warmer homes will mean cheaper gas and power bills, recouping the extra cost in about six years.

    Otago University research has shown properly insulated homes help to combat respiratory illnesses and flu.

    "The standards really have been woefully inadequate compared to standards in other temperate countries," said researcher professor Philippa Howden-Chapman. "The new insulation regulations are timely.

    "The average life of a New Zealand house is 90 years and that's a long time for successive families in uninsulated houses to be cold, especially as the price of energy will continue to rise."

    New homes in the South Island and central plateau of the North Island will be the first required to meet the changed rules. The rest of the North Island south of Auckland will be affected from July next year, with Auckland north affected from next October.

    New homes must meet the improved insulation standards, or they will not get building consents.

    Building Industry Federation chief executive officer Bruce Kohn said tens of thousands of homes were too cold.

    They were either built before minimum insulation standards were introduced in 1977, or their insulation was now useless.

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    nickydwuk's Avatar
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    What about the older homes? Are the government going to give subsidies to get better insulation in the older properties?
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    MotherBear's Avatar
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    Seeing as you're intending settling in the Christchurch area, here's a link about insulation subsidies .

    There's mention of low income families or those intending to replace their open fires with cleaner types of heating, so it's not a general handout. Chch council are very keen to clean up the poor air quality (in winter) and this must be an incentive to get folks to turn away from polluting types of heating.
    Mother Bear

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