Although in whole I was a little less than thrilled with the Adjudicators ruling in the Tenancy Tribunal he was pretty clear that he expected the Flooding under the house to be fixed and we have not in any way shape of form interfered with the contractors as per the order other than giving the Contractor a bag of lemons from our lemon tree.
Originally Housing New Zealand were going to fill under the house with cement and as indicated by them this was going to reduce the 2m+ from underfloor to ground unusable for storage. As indicated to us by a contractor this would not solve the water pooling and although it would cover it up the water would still be there and be absorbed and evaporate through the cement. Such a project would require approximately 5MX5MX2M or 50Cubic Meters of cement and at a cost of $192.00+gst per cubic meter this would not be a cost effective option not to mention the fact it is not likely to resolve the issue and just pouring cement would not work on its own as the foundations of the house would need to be modified.
Just the cement alone would cost over $10'000.00.
This is an issue we have been trying to remedy for over 7 years and have had little luck, the answer is pretty simple but it seems that rather than repair the problem properly in the first place like may other problems Housing New Zealands mentality is to slap a quick and dirty patch on it and hope for the best.
Out of frustration and concern that the job was not going to be done properly we obtained advice from a professional building inspector who also contracts to several large councils. His recommendation is to at the front of the house dig a trench below the depth of the ground at the rear of the house. The trench would need to go through the clay, Insert the relevant drainage tubing such as nova coil then fill with scoria.
It seems that someone was listening as after we submitted this document and went to court they changed their plans and partly did this however instead of going below the clay they dug down to it, inserted the drainage coil then filled it with gravel. In order to do this they had to dig up the path and replace it after the job was done.
While the cement was being poured it started raining and this has damaged the surface of the nice new footpath to a point where the surface just crumbles when rubbed. this may harden deeper down however I took a look under the house only to see that the rain had caused under the house to flood again. At this point I was not sure if this was due to the cement not being hardened or job not being 100% complete.
However around a week later (last night/this morning) 16th September 2010 we experienced come constant rain and this morning after taking a look under the house have found that its full of water again. Its pretty obvious where the water is coming from as I was able to watch it trickle out from around and under the foundations.
I think now I would be quite within my rights to claim that the job has not been done properly and the flooding has not been fixed. Our previous claims to the Adjudicator that work was not being completed properly was ignored and instead the Adjudicator chose to attack us in his summary. Needless to say that since we have now been evicted and have to leave 4 days before Christmas there is probably no need for Housing New Zealand to fix the problem.