Home Inspection News – Issue 15

Median House Prices in February 2018

The median house price across New Zealand rose 6.9% in February compared to February 2017. The median New Zealand house price is now $530,000. Auckland prices seem to be moving again in 2018 and rose 4.6% from January to February.

The median price in Auckland is now $858,000. Of the 16 regions across New Zealand there were only 2 regions where prices did not increase which were the West Coast and Gisborne. Hawkes Bay set new records in January and again in February—now $444,000.


The number of properties sold across New Zealand has now increased for 2 months in a row but the time taken to sell has increased by an average of 4 days to 44 days compared to 40 days in February 2017.

The Reserve Bank statement of the 8th of February left the OCR unchanged at 1.75% and indicated little likelihood of a change any time soon. Net migration for the year to February 2018 was 68,900 so demand for property will remain strong.

Energy Efficiency of Homes 

Typical heat loss from an un-insulated home:

where you lose heat from in your home

The minimum level of insulation required for new homes is laid down in the building code as set out in the Building Act 2004. The NZS4218:2009 Thermal insulation—housing and small buildings apply.

R-Value

Insulation levels are specified by R-Value. R-value is a measure of insulation’s ability to resist heat flow. The higher the R-value, the better the thermal performance of the insulation. See table below and map of climate zones for New Zealand.

  Climate Zones 1 and 2 Climate Zones 3
Roof R 2.9 R 3.3
Walls R 1.9 R 2.0
Floor R 1.3 R 1.3
Heated Floors R 1.9 R 1.9
Windows R 0.26 R 0.26
Skylights R 0.26 R 0.31

For homes with no or little insulation the first place to start is the roof space since this will have the most effect and it is easy to access. The next would be the underfloor if there is access. Walls are much more difficult to insulate and would need removal of either internal linings or external cladding to access.

A building consent may be needed for this work in many cases. Windows and doors can be improved by sealing up any cracks with sealant and using draft stoppers for the bottom of the doors. The use of thermal curtains and closing them at night offers good insulation.

Double glazing also add insulation as well as adding sound proofing and helps to reduce fading by the sun of carpets, drapes and furnishings. The pay back in energy savings for double grazing is however many years.

All new houses have to have double glazing. In Scandinavia  triple glazing is very common. Good insulation reduces energy bills, making for a more comfortable, healthy home.

insulation zoning and different options for insulation