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What Kiwis want – and need – in a home

MEDIA RELEASE

20 November 2014

What Kiwis want – and need – in a home

Forget a spa pool, central heating and landscaped gardens like they push on The Block NZ. What Kiwis really want when they are renovating or choosing a new house is for it to be insulated.

According the State of the Home Survey, commissioned by HRV, insulation was rated “very important” by 84 per cent of those surveyed when choosing a house. This was well ahead of a garage (47 per cent), and around a quarter of people believed ventilation, a heat pump and double glazing were essential in a home.

When respondents were asked what the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) outlined as the key elements that go into creating a warm, dry and healthy home, 92 per cent said insulation, 69 per cent ventilation and 59 per cent heating.

In contrast, central heating and a landscaped garden were a lowly 12 per cent and 8 per cent respectively (although just over half said they would be “nice to have”). A spa pool was rated very important by just 2 per cent of respondents, but a quarter also said a hot tub would be “nice to have” in the backyard or on the deck.

According to the survey the priorities people have when they are renovating their house are similar to when choosing a home to live in. However, a higher number of people consider ventilation, double glazing and a heat pump a more important priority when they are doing up their homes.

The drive behind the State of the Home survey was to shed light on the poor state of New Zealand’s housing stock and increase awareness around creating healthy homes. It also provided some interesting insights into New Zealander’s attitudes when it comes to their home.

Other key findings included:

• Mould is prevalent in 59% of homes and condensation in 31%.

• 1 in 5 Kiwis have moved out of a house because it was cold, damp or mouldy

• 63% would be happy to have their home undergo a housing Warrant of Fitness

• 61% will put another blanket on the bed if they are cold rather than turn on a heating source

• The financial costs of living in a mouldy, damp home are significant. Renters and those who have a mortgage are significantly more likely to suffer damage to carpet, walls, furnishings, clothes and shoes than those who are mortgage free

HRV chief executive Bruce Gordon says when it comes to home priorities it’s great to know many Kiwis are conscious of ensuring their homes are dry and healthy.

“But more work needs to be done to make all of New Zealand’s housing stock safe and healthy. Insulation, and government schemes likeWarm Up: Healthy Homes have been a good step but more is needed and a combination of insulation, ventilation and a good source of heating and cooling is the key to creating a healthy home.

“Sadly, many New Zealand homes don’t have these things and are in a poor, and often mouldy, damp and dangerous state, which impacts on the health and well-being of the occupants, especially children.”

ENDS

* Buzz Channel surveyed 505 people aged between 24 and 75 years. The margin of error on this sample is +/- 4.3% at the 95% confidence level.


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