Christchurch rebuild just 10pc complete

MARTA STEEMAN
Last updated 05:00 04/09/2014
quake graphic land

BY THE NUMBERS

Are you stuck in Sept 4, 2010?

Share your stories, photos and videos.

Related Links

EQC battle felt like the 'twilight zone' Homebush emerges from ruins EQC's cash reserves run close to wind Canterbury quake babies thriving

Relevant offers

Industries

Government directive on housing problems set for release this week, Nick Smith says Panama Papers fallout speeds up NZ's anti-money laundering legislation NZAS expecting tougher market conditions Job hunters vetting employers' online review websites Fox Glacier helicopter company licence suspended after fatal crash Bluff oysters fly out the door, no matter what price Is VDSL broadband as quick as ultrafast broadband in New Zealand? Sanford CEO Volker Kuntzsch defends onboard monitoring cameras Mitre 10 sold more than 400 dehumidifiers at risk of overheating Property buy-up helps boost Stride Property profit by a third

Christchurch is only about 10 per cent repaired four years after a destructive 18-month earthquake sequence started, a city business leader says.

>Share this story on Facebook

Canterbury Employers' Chamber of Commerce Peter Townsend told guests at a disaster conference in Wellington yesterday he was positive about where the city was heading.

"But the perception runs right through the country that we are well advanced on our recovery,'' he said. 

''I know we are about 10 per cent into the physical rebuild and no one will refute that.''

The figure of 50 per cent of over $100,000 cap claims being settled gave a misleading picture of progress. There was a huge gap between physical repairs and the settlement figures, he said.

By his calculation, about $4 billion to $4.5b had been spent on physical repairs. The estimated bill is $45b to $50b.

''We musn't confuse settlement with repair because everything that is cash settled is not repaired.''Just on the housing stock with the cash settlements, I reckon there's $4b to $5b sloshing around in people's bank accounts in Christchurch. That might be a bit high but it's billions.'

Insurance Council of New Zealand (ICNZ) figures, compiled from a Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority survey, show 50 per cent of over $100,000 cap claims ''settled''.

This means the claim is completed either by cash payment, which includes a cheque to buy another house, or by physical rebuilds and repairs. That 50 per cent is almost 11,400 dwelling claims settled by the end of June of a total of 22,739. Of that, 2203 houses have been physically rebuilt or repaired by insurers. Another 11,350 over-cap claims are still to be completed.

PM: 9 IN 10 CLAIMS SETTLED

Prime Minister John Key said at The Press leaders' debate on Tuesday that 90 per cent of quake claims were ''settled''.

Key's definition of ''settled'' included 40 per cent that had reached agreement with insurers but the work has not been completed. ICNZ labels that 40 per cent as ''resolved''.

Insurance Council spokesman Samson Samasoni said issues including apportionment, slow consenting and foundation repair guidelines were outside the control of insurers. It was expected most over-cap claims would be settled by the end of 2016, although some would ''trickle'' into 2017.

About 10 per cent of over-cap claims were unresolved. 

Samasoni said half of those were either people waiting for Earthquake Commission decisions on land claims or in dispute with insurers, and the other half were people who had not had a settlement offer because of ''incredibly complex'' claims in multi-unit buildings or shared retaining walls.

Three large insurers, IAG, Southern Response and Tower, agreed to supply numbers on their insurance claims.

Ad Feedback

 IAG has the largest number of claims, 32,685, two thirds of those for driveways, paths, fences and pools while Southern Response has 28,819 including 7084 for dwellings.

Canterbury Communities' Earthquake Recovery Network spokeswoman Leanne Curtis  said there was good progress on more straightforward claims but the group had noticed a breakdown in trust between claimants and EQC and insurers where the issues were more complex.

Vicki Hyde, of advocacy group InsuranceWatch, said her group was hearing from the ''hard nasty end of it''.

''There's certainly still a lot of simmering anger that we see about how this whole thing has been handled,'' she said.

REMEMBERING FOUR YEARS ON

Homebush emerges from ruins

EQC battle felt like the 'twilight zone'

Is a new life emerging in Christchurch?

Canterbury quake babies thriving

EQC's cash reserves run close to wind

 

PROGRESS REPORT

> Dwelling settlements

IAG 48 per cent

Southern Response 50 per cent

Tower 56 per cent

> Paths, driveway, pool settlements

IAG 58 per cent

Southern Response 69 per cent

Tower 91 per cent

> Rebuilds completed

IAG 476

Southern Response 310

Tower 110

Repairs completed

IAG 405

Southern Response 218

Tower 185 

- The Press

Comments

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content