This is what happens when you put pedantic bureaucrats in charge

The idea of a WOF test for homes is a good one but only if it is kept simple. Labour and the Greens have gone on and on about warm, dry homes. If they want landlords to buy into the scheme WOF’s should focus on basic key issues like adequate insulation, not pedantic small issues that will make them throw up their hands up in disgust and pull their property out of the rental pool.

Financial adviser and rental property owner Joseph Williams in his property which failed the new Wellington City Council ...

Financial adviser and rental property owner Joseph Williams in his property which failed the new Wellington City Council WOF :ROBERT KITCHIN/STUFF

It’s tidy, it’s clean and it’s only seven years old – but it failed the Wellington City Council’s new rental warrant of fitness test.

The house’s owner, one of the two Wellington landlords to test drive the standard, says the council’s own inspection needs a closer look.

Financial adviser Joseph Williams’ property failed, even though it passed a basic council inspection in 2011.

For Williams' property to pass the rental warrant of fitness, the Sustainability Trust's report found that window stays ...

ROBERT KITCHIN/STUFF For Williams’ property to pass the rental warrant of fitness, the Sustainability Trust’s report found that window stays should be installed on this upstairs window.

For Williams’ property to pass the rental warrant of fitness, the Sustainability Trust’s report found that window stays should be installed on this upstairs window.

In August, the council unanimously accepted the scheme, making it the first council in New Zealand to do so.

[…] Williams paid $250 for the inspection, and failed because his porch light was not working, and some window fittings needed security stays.

This is utterly ridiculous. Security stays are a nice to have not a must-have requirement for homes. A porch light is a minor issue that should not fail a property. Adequate insulation and window coverings are a reasonable requirement for a WOF. A working porch light and security stays are not.

Williams said the person who inspected his property was from the Sustainability Trust.

“I don’t know how they’re trained and what qualifications they have.”

[…] Williams said he believed the rental warrant of fitness scheme had good intentions, was good for landlords, and hoped it would be made compulsory.

“But it needs to be tested better.”

Williams said he has 10 rental properties in Wellington, and he wanted all of them to meet the new standard.

His Johnsonville property which failed had passed all council inspections in 2011.

“If this can fail, then what about all the other properties [in Wellington]?”

The report was poorly written and had spelling errors, he said.

Council spokeswoman Victoria Barton-Chapple said the Sustainability Trust, which conducts the council’s rental WOF inspections, were “independent and experienced home performance experts”.

“Every inspector conducting rental WOF inspections has completed training specifically for the rental WOF.”

[…] “Supporting this voluntary rollout is the first step towards developing a Wellington Housing Standard.”

[…] The trust had three experienced home energy and insulation assessors.

They did a one-day training course with the University of Otago for the scheme, he said.

 

 – Stuff

 

 


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