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Leaky homes reforms come into force

An enhanced dispute resolution service and a new independent Weathertight Homes Tribunal are among a range of new reforms coming into force next week.

Saturday, March 31st 2007, 12:00AM

by The Landlord

A pilot financial assistance scheme will also start operating on 2 April 2007.

The enhancements to Weathertight Homes Resolution Services (WHRS) include a streamlined claims process, beefed up assessment reports where claimants can claim for potential as well as actual non-weathertight damage, time-limited mediation and a new fast-track option for claims under $20,000.

The government’s two-year financial assistance pilot will provide access to bridging finance for WHRS claimants who meet the criteria. Claimants will be able to apply to the Housing New Zealand Corporation (HNZC) for a guarantee of support for a private loan, or as a last resort, a direct loan from the HNZC at market rates.


“People who cannot fund repairs themselves or access finance from a private lender will be able to apply for the money needed to fix their home first and argue liability second,” says Housing Minister Chris Carter.

Minister for Courts Rick Barker says the new Tribunal will have enhanced powers to settle claims faster. These include calling all parties together in a preliminary conference to set the ground rules, enforcing time limits for each stage of the adjudication process and for mediation, not allowing delaying tactics, and ordering parties to appear. The Tribunal will also have new offence provisions when parties fail to appear when summoned or disobey an order of the Tribunal, and it will take a more investigative approach.

Enquiries on the new reforms can be made by calling the Department of Building and Housing on 0800 324 477. From Monday 2 April 2007, the Weathertight Homes Tribunal can be contacted directly on 0800 777 757 or online at www.justice.govt.nz/wht and enquiries on the financial assistance pilot can also be made by calling the Housing New Zealand Corporation on 0800 801 601.

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Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
AIA 4.55 ▼2.29 ▼2.59 ▼2.65
ANZ 4.44 2.89 3.25 3.39
ANZ Special - 2.29 2.69 2.79
ASB Bank 4.45 2.29 2.59 2.65
Bluestone 3.49 3.34 2.99 3.34
BNZ - Classic - 2.29 2.59 2.79
BNZ - Mortgage One 5.15 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 4.60 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 4.55 2.89 3.19 3.39
BNZ - TotalMoney 4.55 - - -
CFML Loans 4.95 - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
China Construction Bank 4.49 4.70 4.80 4.95
China Construction Bank Special - 2.65 2.65 2.80
Credit Union Auckland 5.45 - - -
Credit Union Baywide 5.65 3.95 3.85 -
Credit Union South 5.65 3.95 3.85 -
First Credit Union Special 5.85 2.95 3.45 -
Heartland Bank - Online 2.50 1.99 2.35 2.45
Heretaunga Building Society 4.99 3.50 3.40 -
HSBC Premier 4.49 2.25 2.35 2.65
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
HSBC Special - 1.99 - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
ICBC 3.69 2.25 2.35 2.65
Kainga Ora 4.43 2.79 3.04 3.13
Kainga Ora - First Home Buyer Special - 2.25 - -
Kiwibank 3.40 3.20 3.50 3.50
Kiwibank - Offset 3.40 - - -
Kiwibank Special 3.40 2.35 2.65 2.65
Liberty 5.69 - - -
Nelson Building Society 4.95 3.20 3.24 -
Pepper Essential 4.79 - - -
Resimac 3.39 3.35 2.99 3.35
SBS Bank 4.54 2.79 2.79 3.15
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
SBS Bank Special - 2.29 2.29 2.65
Select Home Loans 3.49 3.34 2.99 3.34
The Co-operative Bank - First Home Special - 2.09 - -
The Co-operative Bank - Owner Occ 4.40 2.29 2.59 2.79
The Co-operative Bank - Standard 4.40 2.79 3.09 3.29
TSB Bank 5.34 3.09 3.29 3.45
TSB Special 4.54 2.29 2.49 2.65
Wairarapa Building Society 4.99 3.55 3.49 -
Westpac 4.59 3.09 3.29 3.39
Westpac - Offset 4.59 - - -
Westpac Special - 2.29 2.69 2.79
Median 4.55 2.79 2.99 2.80

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