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Asbestos clarifications welcome relief for landlords

25 May 2018
For immediate release

Asbestos clarifications welcome relief for landlords and property managers, says REINZ

The Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) has today welcomed the policy clarification from Worksafe NZ on the requirement for asbestos management plans for residential rental properties. The clarification will be a welcome relief for landlords and property managers.

On 4 April this year new rules came into force under the Health and Safety at Work (asbestos) Regulations which means that if you own or occupy a building which contains asbestos you needed to have a management plan in place.

Bindi Norwell, Chief Executive at REINZ says: “REINZ has been seeking clarification from Worksafe NZ regarding asbestos management plans and rental properties for a number of months now. Clarity was needed because the wording of the legislation suggested that every residential rental property built before the year 2000 would require a comprehensive asbestos management plan. If this was the case, it would be a prohibitive cost for most landlords.

“The Guidance, released today, clarifies that asbestos management plans are required when there is a risk that asbestos fibres will be released into the air, for example, when renovations or other building work occurs. This means that asbestos management plans are not automatically required for all rental properties,” she continues.

“As asbestos management plans can cost thousands of dollars, today’s news will be a welcome relief to landlords and property managers. No doubt tenants will be relieved too, as this could have seen landlords seeking to offset some of the cost through rental increases,” she concludes.

The guidance for landlords and property managers can be found on the Worksafe website here:

https://worksafe.govt.nz/laws-and-regulations/operational-policy-framework/operational-policies/policy-clarification-residential-landlords-and-asbestos/.

ENDS


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