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Proposed extension of the transition period for insulation settings for new housing
Have your say!

Modern Architecture

In November 2021, MBIE issued the Acceptable Solution H1/AS1 5th Edition and Verification Method H1/VM1 5th Edition. These documents outline the compliance pathways to meet minimum insulation requirements for new housing set out in clause H1 Energy Efficiency of the New Zealand Building Code.

At present, both the 4th edition and the 5th edition of H1/AS1 and H1/VM1 can be used to establish compliance with clause H1 of the Building Code until 2 November this year. After this date, only the 5th Edition documents will be deemed to comply with the Building Code. In April 2022, three industry groups jointly wrote to Ministers asking for a 12-month delay in implementation of the changes in order to: 

  • enable the building sector to ready itself for the change

  • allow constrained supply chains to become more stable and reliable, and

  • lessen the likely economic impact - and consequent mental health impact - on the sector and those in it. 

The changes to the insulation requirements represent an important first step for MBIE's Building for Climate Change programme. The changes will deliver warmer, drier and healthier homes that cost significantly less to heat and will also generate carbon savings through this energy efficiency. MBIE remains fully committed to the successful implementation of the new insulation settings and its wider Building for Climate Change programme. However, the sector is currently under significant pressure and the concerns expressed in the letter to Ministers are very real.

As a result of this, next week MBIE will open a 2-week consultation on a proposed 6months extension of the transition period for the insulation requirements in new housing. The proposed transition period will last to 1 May 2023 and apply to the Acceptable Solution H1/AS1 and Verification Method H1/VM1.

The intent is that this proposed delay will allow supply chains to develop stability and resilience and will also allow MBIE to work closely alongside the sector to ensure there is widespread understanding of the changes and how they should be implemented. 

Please note that the proposed delay applies only to new residential building work. MBIE are not proposing to change the implementation date for commercial construction. If the proposed delay is confirmed, the current date of November 2023 for implementing additional performance improvements for windows would remain unchanged. 

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This proposed extension to the transition period does not prevent people adopting the higher code standard now and that we encourage the sector to do this. 

We welcome your feedback on this proposal.  You can provide that feedback by making a submission on MBIEs Have your Say page.

This consultation will close at 5pm on 13 June 2022