Source: Kainga Ora
A dedicated team of housing support staff is making sure that Auckland customers get the support they need while their flood-damaged homes undergo repairs.
Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities has started to repair some of the 609 properties that were damaged two months ago in the Auckland Anniversary Weekend floods.
Some of the homes have been vacated and the customers permanently rehoused, but in many cases customers will be living in their homes while repairs are carried out.
“All the damaged homes that are occupied have been made safe so customers and their whānau can stay living there. The focus now is on getting those homes repaired as quickly as possible, with minimal disruption to our customers,’’ says Deputy Chief Executive for Auckland and Northland Caroline Butterworth.
One of the immediate priorities for the repair programme is getting damaged heat pumps fixed before the winter so customers can keep their homes warm. That work is under way.
“Because of the number of homes that have been damaged, it is going to take months for us to complete all the repair work so we are prioritising repairs, based on customers’ vulnerabilities and needs, and the amount of damage that has occurred,’’ Ms Butterworth says.
“The flood recovery programme team we have assembled includes 10 Housing Support Managers (tenancy managers) who will support customers living in flood-damaged homes and keep them informed throughout the repair process. They will be checking in with customers regularly to make sure they are okay,’’ Ms Butterworth says.
“We’re very mindful of the inconvenience and stress the repair work may cause some whānau. Because of the nature of the repairs needed – in some homes we’re going to have to rip out and replace floors and wall linings – some whānau will need to temporarily move out. In such cases, we will organise and meet all the costs associated with the move.
“We are making permanent rehousing offers to 268 customers whose homes were severely damaged by the floods. Of those, 92 households have already moved. We are in the process of finding homes for another 93 households. Some of the customers we have offered to rehouse have expressed a preference to remain living in their current home while repairs take place,’’ Ms Butterworth says.
Kāinga Ora appreciates there will be some disruption to customers while the flood damage repairs are being done and is focused on providing practical support to these customers. Because of this, Kāinga Ora has significantly reduced the rent of all customers living in flood damaged homes. These rent reductions will continue until the required repairs to a customer’s home have been completed.