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Victorian renters need cooling & insulation added to minimum rental standards

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Samantha Ratnam
Leader of the Victorian Greens
31 January 2022

On 25 January 2022, I wrote a letter to the Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation asking the Government to introduce cooling and proper insulation to the mandatory requirements for rental properties.  

Each summer, Victorians grapple with longer and hotter heat waves as the result of climate change. Proper cooling and effective insulation would be a game changer for renters during the hotter weather. 

By improving the quality of rental homes we hope to decrease medical costs, levels of hospitalisations and even deaths. All homes in Victoria should be safe, cool and healthy to live in.

LETTER TO THE MINISTER (25 January 2022): 

Dear Minister,

I am writing to ask you to amend the minimum standards for rental properties to introduce cooling and insulation as a mandatory requirement for rentals.

The minimum standards were introduced in 2021, and are designed to ensure that rental properties meet basic structural and safety standards. While the standards include heating as a requirement for rental properties, meaning that every rental home must have a heater in good working order, they do not include any standards for insulation or for cooling.

As Victorians swelter through another warm summer, many renters are living in homes without air conditioning or effective insulation, and are struggling to keep their homes cool in the hot weather. Victorians are also once again working from home in line with current health advice, meaning many renters are spending long hours in hot conditions, and at risk of developing heat-related illness or heatstroke.

With Victorian summers likely to get hotter and longer as we feel the effects of climate change, effective cooling will be necessary to keep rental homes safe and liveable in the summer months. Introducing insulation standards for rental properties will also make it easier and cheaper for renters to keep their homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

I ask you to amend the minimum standards to include cooling and insulation as a mandatory requirement for rental properties, to help keep Victorian renters safe and healthy in the summer.

Download the PDF here. 

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Samantha Ratnam
Leader of the Victorian Greens
31 January 2022


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