We are often asked whether 'homestay' accommodation must be accessible for people with disabilities. A homestay with facilities for up to five guests can usually continue to be treated as a private house.

The Building Code’s clause A1 defines detached dwellings as 'where a group of people live as a single household or family'. The definition includes a 'boarding house accommodating fewer than six people'.

Serviced apartment buildings may need to provide accessible facilities. The Building Code’s schedule 2 refers to 'premises providing accommodation for the public'. If someone can come in from the street and check into an apartment, the building comes under schedule 2. Even if a booking is made in advance, the building is still providing accommodation for the public.

The fact that individual apartments are individually owned under a unit title arrangement makes no difference to the need for accessible units. The Building Code is not concerned with ownership or tenancy arrangements.

2005/156: Notice to fix

This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: