Preventable sickness due to damp, mouldy homes costing NZ $145m

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Section
Audio,
Publish Date
Tuesday, 26 February 2019, 7:05AM
The World Health Organisation report comes a day after the Government's new Healthy Homes standards were released.  Photo / Getty Images

Preventable sickness due to damp, mouldy and cold homes has reached $145 million in ACC claims and hospitalisation. 

The World Health Organisation report comes a day after the Government's new Healthy Homes standards were released. 

Motu Economic and Public Policy Research fellow, Lynn Riggs, carried out the study and told Kate Hawkesby the standards are a very good start to addressing the problems.

She thinks the Government will take the findings of the research into account.

"Especially from a health benefit perspective, if they think about putting into place more policies or programmes to further address these problems." 

She said renters are far more likely to live in a house that is cold or damp.

"There is a lot of research that shows that rental properties are far more likely to be cold, damp, mouldy and in general in worse repair."

"Renters are twice as likely to live on homes that are always cold and about four times more likely to live in houses that have a major damp or mould problem," she said. 

Those statistics worsen in the lower income households, Riggs said. 

"A lot of times the people who can least afford to become ill from these problems are the ones who are most exposed to them."

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