reader report

Chch homes decay as residents wait

04:26, May 08 2014
quake damage house
QUAKE DAMAGE: Three years on some Cantabrians are still living in badly damaged homes.

Repairing people's homes in Christchurch has to be a priority. While the city centre is important and the road works are frustrating, most of us can cope with a multitude of issues if 'home' is okay.  

Your home is your greatest asset and while waiting for repairs, your house falls into a state of disrepair.

Wear and tear is exacerbated by not being able to do anything until earthquake repairs are done, the value of your home is considerably diminished.

The impact of seeing this damage and living amongst it every day is tough on the spirit, not to mention the financial aspect.

Many of us need to be carrying out regular maintenance on our homes but as yet we still don't know if our home is to be repaired or rebuilt.


We cannot afford to repair what might be demolished but nor can we afford to let what may be repaired fall into further disrepair while waiting for the Earthquake Commission (EQC).

There is a lot that has already been achieved in Christchurch. This is a unique experience, no city has quite gone through what we have and so there is a lack of previous experience to refer to.

The result is that people lose patience with progress or perceived lack of at times.

Christchurch residents are human and are dealing with life itself as well as the constant battle of living with the effects of a natural disaster, so resolutions on homes must be a priority for people's general health and well-being. 

For those of us still waiting for EQC repairs we know no more than we did after the September 2010 earthquake and certainly no more than after the February quake. That's over three years. 

Who would buy our house, our home, when we do not know if it will be repaired or rebuilt, or when? A best guess is within the next two to three years. Would others outside of Christchurch accept that it will take five to six years to repair their home?

Resilience has a finite point when it is human beings living with a natural disaster, for that is what we are doing, every day.