Southern Response blamed for Chch home’s long-term damage

by Mina Martin 17 Oct 2016

Southern Response blamed for Chch home’s long-term damage

A Christchurch homeowner has charged an insurer of causing more damage to his home than had been done in the Canterbury earthquakes, it has been reported.

Bob Burnett, one of the 40 members of a class action group yet to resolve claims with Southern Response, said the insurer’s lack of action was what caused long-term damage to his home, RNZ reported.

Burnett’s home in Huntsbury is now in the middle of what he called a ‘man-made disaster’ after a decision to remove gib board and not replace it with bracing caused the structure to weaken and the house to bend out of shape, the report said.   

Burnett said the cost to repair his home was originally set at about $180,000, but has now increased to about $500,000. But because of the long delay in the repairs, Burnett said the structure may now require rebuilding, which would cost roughly $1.5 million, RNZ reported.

Southern Response was unable to respond to the allegation without a privacy waiver from Burnett, who had not provided it with one, RNZ said.

The class action group which charged the company of systematically undervaluing the cost of the claims and scope of work arising out of the Canterbury earthquakes is set to face the court on Wednesday.

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