Worker houses to be permanent

MARC GREENHILL
Last updated 08:59 17/11/2012
Domain Consulting

CHANGEABLE: Computer-generated images of a house that could be used as workers' accommodation, above, but converted to a family home later, below.

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Six-bedroom houses that will turn into family homes are being touted as the accommodation fix for Christchurch's influx of rebuild workers.

Domain Consulting, run by Christchurch property investment consultant Tanya Kwasza and Rosh Daji, have released plans for purpose-built permanent worker accommodation at an investor seminar in Christchurch.

The fully furnished houses would cater for four to eight people, would not be grouped together in a village, but would be located near amenities such as gyms and churches and would become part of the city's housing stock.

Sites had been identified and construction of the first houses was expected to be completed by April.

Kwasza would not say how many sections had been secured, but said sites inside the four avenues and subdivisions at Wigram and Kaiapoi were among the locations.

Potential investors from Canterbury, Auckland, China and Thailand, attended the seminar, she said.

The six bedrooms could be converted to four with a garage when the house was ready for permanent residence. Wall removal was pre-consented.

A smaller four-bedroom option aimed at executives was available also.

"We started off with a concept of a central core and two wings of 10 bedrooms and three bathrooms, but we decided that was too many people under one roof," Kwasza said.

"It's going to be nice to have quality houses on the landscape, rather than dragging old homes around the sites. If Christchurch is going to be built as a number one city, good quality accommodation is a benchmark."

Granite benchtops, a deck, and landscaping were included and investors could add extras, such as garaging or "green" technology.

The construction of permanent accommodation in Christchurch was a "win-win" situation, Kwasza said. Private investors would fund the build after contracts with companies supplying workers were secured.

"It's another of the 20,000 permanent residences needed for Christchurch.

"It's a great stimulus for the New Zealand economy and investors win because they get the extraordinary yields with this being an extraordinary circumstance."

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