Demolition For House That Leaks Like a Sieve

Source: NZ Herald, Thurs 4 Sept 2008

A migrant family are so disillusioned with their big house in the Auckland suburb of Lynfield that they are demolishing it. The large 1980s seaside place had many defects and faults, including leaks. The family came here from Taiwan last decade but are so disheartened after years of enduring the house that they have decided to start again……..

The 255sq m house was badly designed, wet and cold, they said. Problems were so widespread that it was not even worth removing the house from the site for resale…….

They said none of their windows had flashings to keep out rain. Nor were the walls insulated, which meant the place was freezing. The house was oriented towards the seaward side and the prevailing weather so water came into the lounge and the largest bedroom through windows. But because the house was built in the 1980s, the family had no legal redress via the state-funded system which helps leaky-home owners. The house was not eligible for a weathertightness assessment or claim. The Government bans owners of houses built more than a decade ago from using its leaky building service, which offers free house inspections, written reports on defects and dispute negotiation, mediation or adjudication to resolve problems. “It was not built very nicely,” said one of the house’s residents yesterday, adding that her family did not initially know enough about the system to commission a building inspector’s report before they bought it in the 1990s. “We … just thought it was a nice area,” she said. It was only when a family member met a builder that they discovered the extent of the problem. QV has the house listed as being worth $600,000: $310,000 for the house and $290,000 for the large site.