Home Inspection News – Issue 24

Prices in January 2019

14 out of 16 regions of New Zealand had annual price increases in January. The only ones that did not were Auckland and Canterbury. The number of residential property sales were down year on year both in Auckland and Nationally. The warm sunny weather possibly meant would be buyers were at the beach instead.

Five regions saw new record prices:

Manawatu / Wanganui $348,000 up since January 2018 by 21.7%

Marlborough $477,000 up since January 2018 by 16.3%

Southland $277,500 up since January 2018 by 15.6%

Waikato $550,000 up since January 2018 by 12.6%

Otago $475,475 up since January 2018 by 6.4%

The three regions with the largest fall in sales numbers compared to January 2018 were:

Nelson down 35.8%

Gisborne down 23.7

Otago down 16.2%

The time to sell was the longest for almost 7 years with an average of 48 days to sell Nationally. Auckland was the worst with a median time to sell of 51 days which is the longest since February 2009 – almost 10 years.


What is a Safe Level of Meth (Methamphetamine)  or “P” Contamination?

Until 2017 the maximum contamination level in a dwelling with Meth or P contamination that was considered safe to occupy was 0.5 micrograms / 100cm2. In 2017 a new New Zealand standard NZS8510 was introduced which made the level 1.5 micrograms / per 100cm2.

Following a report by the New Zealand governments chief science advisor Peter Gluckman in May 2018, Housing New Zealand changed the safe level below which they did not require clean up or decontamination to be 15.0 micrograms / per 100cm, ten times the New Zealand standard level.

The (REA) Real Estate Authority in June 2018 advised Real Estate Agents that they did not need to disclose to buyers Meth contamination levels below 15.0 micrograms / per 100cm even though NZS8510 says 1.5 not 15.0.

Safe levels in other countries

Looking overseas the “safe levels” set by some other countries are: Australia 0.5 – 30 times lower than Gluckmans 15.0 in New Zealand.

USA, each state varies – the vast majority are between 0.1 and 0.5, 30 to 150 times lower than Gluckmans 15.0 in New Zealand.

Have a look online at an article in the UK Daily Mail. It shows pictures and a video of the scabby legs of tenants where the whole family had serious health problems within a matter of weeks when they moved into a Meth contaminated home.

The levels varied between 0 in some rooms to 10.0 micrograms / per 100cm2 in other rooms. That is way below the 15.0 micrograms / per 100cm2 said to be safe by Gluckman. Would you be happy living in a P contaminated house with levels 30-150 times the level considered safe in Australia or any USA state?

Contamination levels

The Gluckman report does however save Housing New Zealand millions (Housing New Zealand spent $120 million decontaminating houses) of dollars cleaning up houses with contamination above the NZS8510 of 1.5 micrograms / per 100cm2 but below Gluckmans 15.0 micrograms / per 100cm2.

It also means that a lot of contaminated (but now not considered dangerous) state houses can be occupied so the governments housing figures can look better. It’s hard to not conclude that the 15.0 level is a political decision which may prove to be very ill advised and seriously effect the health of many New Zealanders.

Also Google Jackie Wright – Flinders University Thesis, her research shows Meth contamination in houses having adverse heath effects at levels as low as 2.0 micrograms / per 100cm2.

Meth Testing