"The NZ Property Investors' Federation (NZPIF) agrees with the Minister of Housing’s comments that there has been undue panic created around meth contamination of properties." says Andrew King, executive officer of the NZPIF.
While the Government has spent $75 million over three years on testing and remediating houses, the private sector has also spent a considerable amount of money on meth related issues.
The extremely high cost of testing and cleaning rental properties for meth is adding to the cost of providing rental homes in New Zealand.
The "moral panic" described by the Minister has likely been caused by a lack of understanding by the general public as to how the standards have been assessed. The starting point for reaching the current safe level of 1.5 micrograms of meth was achieved by starting at a level of meth that causes no effect on people and then dividing this by 100 to apply a safety margin.
Massey University toxicologist, Dr Nick Kim, has said that the new 1.5 level is still 3,000 times lower than the lowest dose recorded to have a pharmaceutical effect.
"It appears that a considerable amount of money is being spent on a problem that doesn't appear to exist" says Andrew King. "In addition to the cost and its effect on rental prices, there is also the time it takes to do all the testing and the time that rental housing is unavailable when it doesn't pose any health risk."