Four months in a leaky house
For four months, Joanna Swinton has been waiting for Housing New Zealand to fix her leaking, stinking roof.
When it rains, water pours into her daughter’s bedroom in Cannons Creek, Porirua.
Swinton said she had begged Housing NZ ‘‘almost daily’’ to fix the roof, which first gave way during the floods that soaked the Porirua region on May 5.
Fed up with a lack of action, she contacted the Kapi-Mana and within an hour of being sent questions on Thursday, Housing NZ turned up to make temporary repairs, and to apologise for how long she had waited.
She has been told more permanent repair work will begin next week.
But Swinton said she was exhausted by her long fight. ‘‘I know we should be grateful we’re not sleeping in a car, but it’s hard. I’m tired of fighting to have it fixed.
‘‘When it first started pouring, contractors disconnected a leaking power socket and two weeks later ran silicone sealant around the roof.
‘‘It didn’t work. The next time it rained, the water came in and they said I had to wait until the next sunny day for it to be fixed.’’
Despite ‘‘ample’’ sunny days, constant phone calls and a com- plaint to the Tenancy Tribunal, she said she had been ignored.
‘‘When I told them I could hear water running inside the wall, they sent around a waterproof tarpaulin.’’
She left the windows in the room open, but with the door shut to try and contain the cold and the smell, she said.
‘‘It’s freezing, I run a dehumidifier on rainy days, but it doesn’t make much of a difference.
‘‘Last weekend the bucket that catches the water overflowed and drenched the carpet in the bedroom. I called them about that, but nothing happened.’’
Housing NZ area manager Kathy Furfie said on Thursday that temporary repairs were made to the roof in June, and work to replace it was booked in for later this month.
‘‘We visited the tenant today to undertake further temporary repairs, to let her know when the roof replacement work will be done and to apologise for the length of time it has taken.’’
Joanna Swinton battled Housing New Zealand for four months to get her roof repaired.