“P” House Contamination is an Unwelcome Property Trend

 Problematic “P” trends have broadened to include unsuspected contamination in homes, whether by a tenant or former owner.

It is becoming increasingly common to have residential sale and purchase agreements subject to a “P” residue test, or for this to be part of general due diligence.  This has been particularly prevalent in the case of residential rental properties.

However, while there are clearly understood risks around “P” residue, the testing for “P” has – in the view of some experts – got a bit out of control and the absence of any agreed-upon standards as to what level of renovation is required to “clean” a “P” house has caused problems.

Finally, scientific work has resulted in a New Zealand Standard (NZS 8510:2017) “Testing and Decontamination of Methamphetamine Contaminated Properties”.  The standard provides industry guidance and good practice methods in the testing and cleaning up of contaminated houses.

As a purchaser, it is reasonable to be satisfied that a purchased property has been adequately decontaminated.  Vendors also need to be satisfied that any testing is measured in accordance with the appropriate health standards.

We have prepared suitable clauses for vendors or purchasers concerned about possible “P” contamination, so please contact us if you require assistance.

In addition, residential landlords should give serious consideration to providing the right in any tenancy agreement to test your rental investment properties as part of regular inspections, and the right to terminate the tenancy for levels in excess of the acceptable standards.

For assistance, contact Anna Souter at anna@mackenzie-elvin.com or Karen Rodler at karen@mackenzie-elvin.com