Tenants calling for energy efficiency rules in rental homes

By Anonymous
January 17, 2017

Theage.com.au has reported (17/01/2017) on a new push for energy efficiency rules in rentals.

Tenants around Melbourne are feeling the heat  with temperatures inside many inefficient homes reaching 30 degrees inside.  Victoria's extreme weather takes it's toll and many have gas bills in winter three times the amount than in other seasons.

Environment Victoria says that renters are bearing more than their fair share of the costs of inefficient homes.  They are campaigning for the state government to introduce minimum energy efficiency standards for rental homes.

With a quarter of all Australian households renting, its time landlords should carry more responsibility for ensuring properties are more efficient with measures such as ceiling and wall insulation, draft stoppers and better curtains and awnings to help reduce unaffordable bills and uncomfortable conditions.

The often short term nature of rental tenancies discourages tenants from making these improvements themselves.

Anne Martinelli, campaigner for Environment Victoria, referred to most of Victoria's houses as little more than "glorified tents" and had concerns that there was little incentive for landlords to invest in insulation and improvements as they are not paying the energy bills.  More than 4000 people have signed a petition saying that too many renters are paying unaffordable cooling and heating bills.

The state government is currently conducting a review of rental laws.  A draft plan by the NSW government for energy efficient homes has put forward an option including minimum efficiency standards before homes can be leased.