Complexities of flood repairs

While we recognise the important issues you have raised in your report on the plight of those with flood damaged homes allegedly caused by cowboy builders (News, 10 April), we feel that although insurance companies must be held accountable, we must also consider all the other groups involved in this issue.

Clearly the construction industry has a degree of accountability. Passing off jobs to sub-contractors, who aren’t appropriately managed or even qualified, to try to complete the work quickly is not helpful.

However homeowners also need to understand the sometimes complex and individual nature of the drying and repair process.

I’ve heard of cases of insurance companies being put under so much pressure to repair homes that they were forced to send in builders before homes had properly dried out. This only causes more damage in the long term. People need to realise that claims aren’t being held up on purpose – there is usually a very good reason for it.

We also need to recognise the environment that everyone was working in last summer. A significant amount of localised flooding affecting so many homes led to an instant overload of resources and planning. Disaster plans were put into place and, considering the amount of claims that were processed without any issue, I’d say this was quite an achievement for the industry.

As climate change is expected to get worse and natural disasters like floods increase, we need to stop looking for people to blame, but ensure that everyone involved in the repair process properly manages expectations with all parties and comes together to create a solution to properly address the problem.

Brian Hill

Head of property services

Innovation Group