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Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Release of EQC and Fletchers repair time frames

EQC have today released information on the time frames for repair work to be undertaken by Fletchers/EQR. The main target for the Canterbury Home Repair Programme is 80 percent of homes in the managed repair programme completed by 2014.

Fletchers/EQR have stated:
“Within this target (80%), EQC will prioritise the worst damaged homes – those with over $50,000 worth of damage. We hope to have these completed by mid-2013, but it will depend on the number of properties which ultimately fall into this category. We will update our customers on progress against this target as we go."
The EQC media release is here and that of Fletchers/EQR here.

There is no hard information yet about how decisions will be made, and whether priority will also be assessed in terms of need ( e.g. health & well being, age, infants and young children, how long people have been out of their homes or living in damaged homes). So far costs and efficiencies appear to be the primary criteria (although see Fletcher/EQR's meadia release here). As prioritising is not covered in the EQC Act or insurance policies there would seem to be room to manoeuvre. Granted insurers and re-insurers will want to minimise costs, but the social impact has to be considered. EQC provide a brief overview of how they are currently looking at priorities here.

No mention is made of those cases where rebuilds are involved and EQC are of the view they should be done by Fletchers/EQR.

Also not mentioned is the potentially vexed issue of timetabling work around mutual convenience. Anecdotally the approach to date has been to tell homeowners when they must move out, at times with little prior notice, and pressurise the people to comply. Some time soon there will need to be a discussion over the relative positions of the parties to the EQC contract.

At this early stage there is not much that can be said about what is intended, other than a slight misapprehension that this could become a situation where easy gains and short cuts will be taken throughout the work chain to meet deadlines.

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