Government provides support and certainty to displaced homeowners

Auckland Social Development and Employment

The Government is delivering certainty to displaced homeowners affected by the recent North Island extreme weather events, providing an interim payment to support them when their insurance payments for temporary accommodation run out.

The interim payment will be available from 4 September 2023, made weekly and directly to homeowners, and set at 100 per cent of the average rent declared by Accommodation Supplement recipients in the recipients’ region.

“We recognise the need to provide certainty to residents who are unable to return to their homes. This payment will help bridge the gap until repairs are undertaken or a decision is made on the future of their property,” Minister for Social Development and Employment Carmel Sepuloni said.

“After picking up the Auckland portfolio, I prioritised visiting areas impacted by the extreme weather events. Having talked informally to many residents, it’s clear that they need and deserve certainty so that they can plan, recover, and get back to a sense of normality.

“The Government has prioritised setting up this payment now, as payments from insurers for temporary accommodation start to run out and the future for some people’s homes remain uncertain. 

“If a longer-term solution is needed there is work underway on what that might look like. In the meantime, the interim payment will give displaced homeowners the certainty and confidence they need to plan ahead,” Carmel Sepuloni said.

Displaced homeowners who are eligible for the interim payment announced today can receive a lump-sum payment covering them from as early as 1 June 2023, to ensure that there is not a gap in support during this difficult time.

The interim payment will be known as North Island Weather Events – Temporary Accommodation Assistance (NIWE TAA). MSD can be contacted from 21 August to book an appointment.

Payments are not taxable and will not affect Working for Families and most other social assistance entitlements.