Rental housing Warrant of Fitness

Date: 06 March 2014

The Government is developing a rental Warrant of Fitness, as announced in the 2013 Budget and will initially implement it in Housing New Zealand properties from early 2014.

The Warrant of Fitness will use a pass / fail standard and will consider whether the property:

  • Is insulated and dry - this will take into account ceiling and  under floor insulation, ventilation and whether there are any leaks in the roof or cladding of a property
  • Is safe and secure - e.g. whether the property has smoke alarms, handrails on stairs and is the hot water set at a safe temperature.
  • Has essential amenities - e.g. functioning power points, food preparation facilities, and a functioning bath / shower and toilet.

The Government has not made any decision on regulating standards of rental properties in the private market, although five councils are field testing an assessment tool for rental properties.

Any decisions will be made following implementation of a Warrant of Fitness in Housing New Zealand properties and are likely to include consideration of cost-benefit analysis and implications for tenants and landlords.

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