Building by the book

When it comes to building and renovations it can be tempting to head straight for the hammer and nails, but it’s often best to do things by the book.

Under the New Zealand Building Act, most residential work requires a building consent to assure the job is up to set regulations and standards. Failure to adhere to the guidelines can see builders out of pocket and residents out of home, as some Waitakere tenants found recently when they were given less than a week’s notice to move out of their home because of safety concerns with the building.

After complaints including leaky homes and substandard workmanship led city council staff to inspect the Housing NZ complex, the unit was found to be a serious health and safety risk and nearly 30 occupants were given less than a week to vacate the premises so repair work could begin.

Housing New Zealand chief operating officer Stephen McArthur says the council notified the owners that they had to fix repair work that had been carried out without resource consent.

According to Mr McArthur, the residents will be housed in temporary accommodation until homes in a new development in St Lukes are available next month.