PHOTO: Flood-damaged homes. 1NEWS
When heavy rain hit Auckland on May 9, Bex Hurley’s street was inundated.
“If we do happen to sell it, which is unlikely, it will be the same thing, I’m still going to worry about the person who’s living here,” she told 1News.
She and her partner have been building a new home for two years. They’re due to move out of their current place in several weeks.
While the interior of the house is raised and undamaged, the downstairs garage is a different story – the water was as high as three metres in the January floods.
“The RV’s only around $630,000 – but nobody’s willing to pay that for it,” she said. “We’re probably going to be leaving our house empty for squatters to move into.”
It’s not just Hurley in this position.
While nobody else wanted to appear on camera, 1News has spoken to others in West Auckland affected by the floods who are also looking to sell their properties.
“Some of these properties, it’s really obvious they’ve been damaged by flooding,” says Jen Baird, chief executive of the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand. “There have been some listings where it’s been really, really open, and that’s what it needs to be in this situation.”
The Government says consultation on the future of properties severely affected by flooding and Cyclone Gabrielle will begin in early June.
A spokesperson for Cyclone Recovery Minister Grant Robertson said: “Decisions on the future for residential properties affected by flooding and cyclone events are being made locally, supported by central government to give residents a path forward to recovery.”
The Government’s already announced a risk categorisation framework for affected properties – low, managed and high risk – which will determine what happens to a property.
“We acknowledge it is stressful for residents waiting to hear about the future of their properties and want to assure you that the Government is doing all it can to move through this process as quickly and effectively as possible,” a spokesperson said.
Hurley is struggling with the uncertainty.
“We understand that things can’t be rushed, but I think they also need to put themselves in our shoes,” she says. “We also worry that they won’t classify us as an extreme case that needs a potential solution because we always get white stickered.”
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