Discussing :: Cold Homes - the great winter killer


Cold Homes - the great winter killer

While the Government invests precious resources to encourage us all to get immunised and, depending on our particular age group, ensure regular health screening, we remain oblivious to one of the biggest winter killers of all – our cold, damp homes. Poorly insulated and ventilated homes pose very real health risks, particularly to children and older people. These risks include respiratory problems, fevers, headaches and sore throats. Homes in New Zealand are recognised as being inadequately heated and unusually cold. The World Health Organisation recommends a minimum indoor temperature of 18C, yet nearly a third of Kiwi homes fall short of this mark. Fuel poverty, driven by the expensive price of gas and electricity, compounds the problem. In recent years, there has been more substantial investment in home insulation and more effective heating sources, such as heat pumps, but it will take many years to turn the situation around. In the meantime, perhaps the Government might like to consider funding a two week winter break in a Pacific Island for those Kiwis most vulnerable to the perils of their own cold homes? How about it?

Why did we continue to build these homes through the generations? Is our country far to new to understand its climate and the resources available to build warm homes. Listen to our lateral thinkers and be prepared to follow some new ideas and we may find a solution.


Cold Wet Houses: Spores + Moisture = Mold & Mildew. The first reflex when people smell mold is to throw open the windows, which is exactly the wrong thing to do. It actually makes the mildew worse. Found this website the other week on Mold. Have a read, its changed my way of thinking. http://www.oldhouseweb.com/how-to-advice/mildew-and-mold.shtml

When I complained of black mold on the walls to our landlord she said 'leave the windows open'. This was on a very cold rainy day. Yeah, that's gonna help!!


There are a lot of old, dark and damp homes in New Zealand which is not good with Winter coming in. Electricity prices are so expensive, that it's really hard to adequately heat them. I think there should definitely be funding available to insulate and warm our homes so that kids don't have to grow up in these sorts of environments.

There is funding available, it's just not easy to get. And landlords have to pay about 40%, which they aren't always prepared to do. When I talked to our landlord he said he doesn't want to spend anything on the house until it starts making money, ie. when the mortgage is paid off. Also, he said he had to pay for his wedding this year so had no money. Thanks, mate.


I really feel for all the people going through winter in a cold, damp house, especially in places like Christchurch where it's freezing and with the recent snowfall, it will not be too pleasant.


Why haven't local body councils addressed these issues years ago.....because power was cheap (government run), wood was cheaper (no antismog laws) and the idiots who thought heat pumps would save the day had vested interest in emptying your wallets. How long has it taken to figure out nz homes are cold??? I remember as a kid having multiple wool blankets on a bed and was snug as a bug (yes real nz wool blankets) anyone seen any for sale lately? Oh yeah, its all exported and ficken expensive considering we still have a large number of sheep in this country....opps having a rant. back to the issue...councils could have imposed much tougher insulation codes years ago and they're still like wet paper bags about this issue, open your eyes look to europe and compare.


We had a ceiling ventilation system about 8 years ago (no brand mentioned), best thing we ever did. The system keeps your house warm and is especially noticeable in spring and autumn. No more cold house and no sign of mold. Our house is now warm and we hardly have to use the heat pump. Best to get quotes before jumping in as the prices vary quite a bit. Highly recommend.


Unfortunately for me & my family we live in a very cold house....have to have the econo panel heaters thru out the house to warm it up....Lucky for me my youngest children spend 3 months in Raotonga to get away from the cold with their mother.......Heat pump would be great......


Housing quality in New Zealand is pathetic! When you see the difference in Europe with double glazed windows, underfloor heating and proper insulation there is no comparison. The astronomical price of power here makes it so expensive to even attempt to heat a home properly. Poor construction quality & insulation leads to poor soundproofing which is unacceptable for modern higher concentration living. Just one more reason to leave the country.


The one think that makes my home colder is an oak tree on my neighbours property that has low hanging brances that block sun through the windows of my home over the warmest parts of the day... because it is listed as protected I just have to suffer... they won't allow it to be pruned unless it's in the power lines. It also covers my property in leaves & no grass grows on my lawn in summer because of it's shade. When I bought the house the tree was much smaller than it is now.


I will NEVER understand why they don't double glaze, insulate and central heat the NZ homes??????????????????? mould is NOT healthy

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