Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson is calling for a comprehensive Rental Warrant of Fitness (WOF) scheme to ensure that everyone in New Zealand lives in a warm, dry, healthy home.
“I am proud to say that this Government is now taking major steps to ensure that people who live in rented accommodation are guaranteed the right to a warm and healthy home, submissions are now open on the Healthy Homes Guarantee which will see a major lift in the legal standards for housing.
“Unfortunately, at the moment, the enforcement of housing standards to protect our older citizens as well as our younger ones is just not fit for purpose. Tenants currently have to take their landlord all the way to the Tenancy Tribunal to make sure the laws are abided by. That’s a pretty high barrier to enforcing laws designed to make sure people aren’t living in homes that make them sick, that can cause very serious respiratory disease.
“A Warrant of Fitness for rented homes would ensure that New Zealanders living in those homes have confidence that the house is dry, warm and healthy to live in, no matter what. And that if a home cannot pass the standard it cannot be rented out. We have a warrant of fitness for cars, we need them for homes.
“A Rental WOF would be a regular check on rented homes by independent approved inspectors to make sure they meet the healthy home regulations for warmth, dryness and ventilation so our tamariki, our old people, and all our citizens living in rented accommodation don’t get sick.
“This would mean all of us would live in a warm, dry, healthy home - that’s why it’s crucial we have a comprehensive Rental Warrant of Fitness scheme to uphold the Government’s Healthy Homes Guarantee”.