Charlotte Foster

Real Estate

Rental properties dip below “safe” temperatures

Rental properties dip below “safe” temperatures

If you have ever felt freezing cold in your rental apartment, even when you have a blanket wrapped around you and the heater on, you’re not alone. 

According to a new study, conducted by tenants’ advocacy group Better Renting, rental homes in both New South Wales and Victoria are below the World Health Organisation’s recommended “safe and well-balanced” 18ºC a full 70 per cent of winter months.

On top of this, the lowest house temperature recorded so far was a toe-numbingly low 6ºC.

While the study is still ongoing, these figures are enough to raise concern. 

The group’s founder and executive director, Joel Dignam, said that even beyond these 18ºC, there were very low temperatures seen in even relatively warm parts of the two states.

“Even in some relatively warmer parts of Australia, the average temperatures are still really low. So in New South Wales and Victoria, the average temperature in the rental properties we’re tracking is still below 18ºC,” he told the ABC. 

The study involved the group using around-the-clock temperature trackers inside 70 rental homes over seven weeks during winter.

On top of these alarming temperatures, Sydney’s wild weather and unrelenting rain since March has meant many homes, specifically rentals, are filled with damp and mould, which thrive in a colder environment. 

In response to this, landlords have been telling renters it’s not only their responsibility to fix it, but that the solution was to leave windows open for ventilation, bringing in the freezing temperatures. 

All these elements considered, it seems renters can’t win.

While the conclusion of the report has not yet been finalised, hopefully there is some resolution for tenants to be able to live in a warm, and habitable environment. 

Image credits: Getty Images

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