Our 3-Step Escape Plan

  • First Escape Route
  • Second Escape Route
  • Meeting Place

Use this space to note any additional information about your escape plan, i.e. who will assist

Your checklist
  • Get low

    Smoke is poisonous and more deadly than flames.

    If you breathe smoke for more than a few breaths it can kill you.

  • Be fast

    A house fire can kill you in less than three minutes.

    Don't spend time trying to save possessions.

  • Close doors

    A closed door buys you time.

    It slows down the spread of fire, giving you more time to get to safety.

  • Get out - stay out!

    People have died by going back into a fire.

    Don't leave the meeting place to go back inside for any reason.

Fire and Emergency levy for 2026-2029

Public consultation on our proposed levies for the period 1 July 2026 – 30 June 2029 has closed.

About the Fire and Emergency levy

Fire and Emergency is funded almost entirely through levies on eligible insurance policies.

New Zealanders have been funding their fire services through levies paid on insurance policies since the 1970s. We are now consulting on new levy arrangements and the activities we plan to undertake during the levy period.

The new levy will take effect on 1 July 2026. 

Discussion document to support consultation

To support consultation on the levy arrangements for the period 1 July 2026 – 30 June 2029, a discussion document on our website sets out:

  • the activities we propose to undertake over the levy period and the estimated costs of delivering these activities
  • our proposed levy rates
  • the assumptions we have made in estimating our costs and the steps involved calculating the proposed levy rates.

We welcome submissions from levy payers, insurance policy holders, their representatives and interested members of the public on our proposals to help inform the Government's decisions on the final levies for 2026-2029.

There were some errors in the previous version of the discussion document which may have caused some confusion.  While the rates as of 1 July 2024 and proposed future rates were correct, the table on page 21 incorrectly said Third party fire and theft insurance did not attract a levy and there were some miscalculations of the dollar value change between the proposed levy rate and the rates as of 1 July 2024. In Appendix 3 on page 36 the table had incorrectly labelled rows. The labels have been updated. The data within the rows was correct and has not been changed. These have been updated and a new version of the discussion document is available to download now.

Download the Discussion Document [PDF, 2.9 MB] [PDF, 834 KB]Download the Cost Recovery Impact Statement [PDF, 834 KB]

Frequently Asked Questions

We have prepared responses to some commonly asked questions about the Levy, our proposed changes and the consultation.

This list will be added to as more questions come in and some answers may change as more detail becomes available.

If you cannot find the answer to your question here, please email the team LevyFeedback@FireandEmergency.nz.

Why is FENZ funded through a levy on insurances? 

Funding for fire services through insurance levies on residential property, motor vehicle and non-residential property insurance has been in place since the mid-1970s.

The Fire and Emergency Act 2017 determines how we are funded and continues levy arrangements.

The 2017 Act resulted in (a) changes to make the levy system fairer (b) deferring the introduction of the new levy (c) mandating that we consult with people impacted by changes to the levy, before the levy is changed.

By ‘proposed rates,’ does this mean the levy might not be implemented?  

Part 3 of the Fire and Emergency Act 2017 must be implemented by 1 July 2026, or a decision must be made by the Minister and Cabinet, to further extend the implementation date in the legislation The final rates of levy will be decided by the Government and informed by the feedback received from this public consultation.

I don’t have an insurance policy. Does this mean I’ll be charged if I use Fire and Emergency services? 

No, the emergency response Fire and Emergency provides will continue to be available to all people who need it, regardless of insurance or financial status. 

New Zealand does not have a ‘user pays’ system for emergency services.

What strategy is in place to recover costs incurred by Fire and Emergency?

The Fire and Emergency Act 2017(external link) sets out how the organisation is to be funded. Part 3 of the Act(external link) provides for a levy to fund Fire and Emergency to carry out its functions and duties. Under Part 3, the levy should be equitable, but without strict apportionment according to use, benefit or risk.

While some cost recovery may have been possible for some of the fire services that pre-dated Fire and Emergency, the Act does not currently include that provision and the levy we collect funds all activities undertaken by the organisation.

We do not operate a user pays service and we will continue to respond when called, no matter the callers insurance status.

Decisions relating to the mechanisms by which Fire and Emergency is funded, including cost recovery and the levy, are made by Government through the Department of Internal Affairs and not by Fire and Emergency.

How are the costs associated with activities outside Fire and Emergency’s “core” activities funded?

Appendix 1(external link) of the discussion document shows how we allocate our costs across our activities. Direct costs are allocated to a response activity based on incident data and some direct costs are allocated to non-response activities (e.g. fire prevention). Corporate and readiness overheads are then allocated across the activities, although readiness costs are allocated only to our “core” activities.

Appendix 3 discusses how we calculate the levy rates and apportion the costs against the policy holder groups (PHGs).

This method is the same for both our “core” and “non-core” services.

For non-response activities (e.g. readiness and risk reduction) the allocation of costs to PHG occurs as predetermined percentages for non-incident driven outputs (e.g. Education, Advice on Building Design) based on analysis including historical trends and consultation within Fire and Emergency.

Incident-driven costs are allocated based on whether the incident we attended was at a residential home, non-residential site or involved a motor vehicle.


Consultation has now closed. Any submissions received after 5pm Friday 17 May 2024, cannot be accepted.