In some situations a property may be exempt from complying with the healthy homes standards or parts of the standards.

All private rentals must comply within 90 days of any new or renewed tenancy after 1 July 2021, with all private rentals complying by 1 July 2024.

All boarding houses must comply by 1 July 2021. All houses rented by Housing New Zealand and registered Community Housing Providers must comply by 1 July 2023.

The general exemptions that exempt a landlord from complying with the healthy homes standards in relation to a rental property are:

1. If the landlord intends to demolish or substantially rebuild the rental property within 12 months. The landlord must have an application pending or granted for any necessary resource consent or building consent.

This exemption only applies for the relevant 12-month period from the start of the tenancy or the relevant date the property must comply with the healthy homes standards. This exemption ceases to apply at the end of the 12-month period. The exemption will also cease to apply in other circumstances, for example:

  • if the resource or building consent lapses, is terminated, or if the pending consent application is refused.
  • If the landlord receives a request for evidence and fails to provide this to the person making the request within 10 working days.
  • If the landlord receives a Tribunal request for evidence and fails to comply within the timeframe allowed by the Tribunal.

More information about this exemption is available in regulation 31 of the Residential Tenancies (Healthy Homes Standards) Regulations 2019 (external link)

2. If the tenant is the immediate former owner of the rental property and the tenancy started immediately after the landlord acquired the property from the tenant. In this situation, an exemption will apply for 12 months from the date the tenancy commences.

3. If a rental property is part of a building and the landlord does not own the entire building (for example, if a landlord owns an apartment). The landlord will be partially exempt from complying with parts of the standards if their ability to comply with the healthy homes standards is not possible because:

  • they need to install or provide something in a part of the building where the landlord is not the sole owner, or
  • they need access to a part of the building that they are not the sole owner.

Landlords must still take all reasonable steps to ensure the rental property or building complies with the healthy homes standards to the greatest extent reasonably practicable.

If one of these exemptions ceases to apply during the term of the tenancy (eg, the building consent expires), the landlord must comply with the healthy homes standards as soon as is reasonably practicable.

Where the exemption is because of a pending application for a resource or building consent and this is refused then the landlord will have 90 days to comply with the healthy homes standards, unless the landlord challenges the refusal. The exemption will be reinstated while the challenge is determined.

Specific exemptions

Some standards also have specific exemptions that apply only to that standard. The specific exemptions may apply to the whole standard or parts of the standard. These are described on each standard’s page:

There are no specific exemptions to the draught stopping standard.