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More healthier homes for Nelson Tasman

Older houses in the Nelson Tasman region are in for a warm-up - if the owner or tenant has a current Community Services card, making them eligible for the Healthier Homes community insulation retrofit project.

The first 36 homes have already been fitted with insulation and other energy-saving measures. The project, implemented in the Nelson and Tasman regions - and their surrounding areas including Collingwood, Murchison, Motueka and Richmond - is designed to improve the health and wellbeing of home occupants, save money and conserve energy.

Where it is needed, and is physically possible to install, ceiling and under floor insulation, hot water cylinder wraps, draught stopping and energy saving lamps will be installed into the selected homes. Occupants will also receive an energy check which looks at where energy is being used and advice on how it can be used more efficiently.

The homes are being identified through local social service agencies, Work and Income New Zealand and the Primary Health Organisations associated with the Nelson Marlborough District Health Board.

Homeowners and tenants with a Community Services Card will be asked to contribute a minimal amount towards the cost of the ceiling and under floor insulation, with the other energy efficiency measures installed at no cost.

Nelson Tasman Housing Trust Chair, Kindra Douglas, said the Trust was thrilled with the progress, which would not have happened without the support of Methodist Social Action, the Nelson Marlborough DHB, Contact Energy, Network Tasman and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority.

"We are now taking more referrals for this worthwhile project. We are constantly receiving positive feedback with many people already feeling the effects of a drier, warmer home." Kindra said.

Chair of the Healthier Homes Nelson Tasman project steering committee, Barbara Graves, agrees. "We know of the effect of cold, damp homes on health, particularly the link to respiratory problems. There are a large number of older homes in our area that have no ceiling or under floor insulation which could be losing nearly 50 per cent of their warmth. Added to this, are significant economic and social benefits generated through this project that impact on the whole community."

If you live in the Nelson or Tasman regions, are a homeowner or tenant of a pre 1977 home and hold a current Community Services Card, you can call the project managers EnergySmart Ltd on 0800 777 111 for more information.


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