The Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) has welcomed the Government $142 million investment to make Kiwi homes healthier.
This spending in a new four-year programme, known as Warmer Kiwi Homes, will make the homes of lower-income New Zealanders warmer and drier by providing grants to insulate and heat homes, says EECA Chief Executive Andrew Caseley.
“Too many homes are cold and damp, leading to preventable diseases such as rheumatic fever and asthma. That’s a burden on Kiwi families, as well as the health system.”
Mr Caseley says some parts of the community are particularly at risk.
“Low-income families, young children and the elderly are especially vulnerable to the impacts of living in cold, damp housing.”
The first year of the programme will focus on ceiling and underfloor insulation as the highest priority for creating a warm, dry home, Mr Caseley says.
“Homes that aren’t properly insulated are very costly to heat, with heat escaping through the ceiling and underfloor.”
“Lower-income home owners will be able to access grants covering two thirds of the cost of installing ceiling and underfloor insulation.”
Grants to install heating appliances will be available from July 2019, Mr Caseley says.
Warmer Kiwi Homes will be delivered by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) which is working through details of the new grants programme.
Frequently asked questions
When will the new Warmer Kiwi Homes start?
Home owners can apply for grants from 1 July 2018. Further details will be posted on EECA’s Energywise website – www.energywise.govt.nz
Who is eligible for grants?
Those on low incomes who own and live in their homes (not landlords) are eligible.
Low income will be defined as those who either:
• have a Community Services Card, OR
• live in a New Zealand Deprivation Index decile 9 or 10 area, OR
• are families referred through the Ministry of Health’s Healthy Homes Initiative.
What do the grants cover?
The grants cover ceiling and underfloor insulation and ground moisture barriers. From year two they will also cover the installation of a heating device. Details on which heating devices will be funded are still being worked through.
How many homes will be insulated?
EECA estimates 52,000 houses will be insulated or have a heater installed over the four years of the programme (some will receive both).
Why are heating measures being brought in later?
Heating measures will be added from 1 July 2019 to align with the heating standards being developed under the Healthy Homes Guarantee Act. Insulation is always the first priority for creating a warm, dry home.