Over a thousand insulation and heating installers are back on the job this week to make New Zealand homes warmer and drier, says Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods.
“Alert Level 3 means 1,300 contractors will be back installing insulation and heaters under the Government’s Warmer Kiwi Homes programme, before cooler winter weather arrives.”
Under the programme, grants are available for lower-income home owners covering two-thirds of the cost of ceiling and underfloor insulation and/or an efficient heater such as heat pumps, wood burners or pellet burners.
“Insulation and heating helps prevent respiratory illness and the Warmer Kiwi Homes helps protect the most vulnerable in our communities. More than 20,000 efficient heaters and insulation have been installed in New Zealand homes since the programme launched in July 2018.
“Keeping New Zealanders as healthy as possible is a key priority for this Government as we fight COVID-19, and getting this important work underway again will make a difference in people’s lives.”
Contractors will adhere to stringent safety measures and won’t go into homes where anyone has COVID-19 or symptoms of the virus. In most cases they work under the house or in the ceiling when installing insulation.
“Where installers do need to go into a house, such as when they are installing a heat pump, they will practise social distancing and make sure surfaces are cleaned.
“A safe return to work for the industry will help the viability of this important sector.
“Meanwhile the doubling of the Winter Energy Payment aimed at keeping New Zealanders warm during the COVID-19 crisis, starts at the end of this week on 1 May 2020,” said Megan Woods.
The Winter Energy Payment provides assistance to beneficiaries and older New Zealanders to help with power costs in the winter months.