Pensioner housing upgrade underway

5/04/2019 3:00 p.m.

5 April 2019 

Waipa District Council is continuing to upgrade its pensioner housing units.

Council owns 129 pensioner housing units in eight complexes in Kihikihi, Cambridge and Te Awamutu. It is close to finalising the sale of its Palmer St complex in Te Awamutu to Habitat for Humanity, Central North Island Ltd. All Palmer St tenants will stay in the complex following the sale.

Over the past three years Council has upgraded its pensioner housing stock, modernising the units to ensure they are warm and safe. With the exception of Palmer St which the new owner plans to upgrade, the units have been re-insulated with modern materials to meet new legislative requirements. All 129 units have been fitted with a heat pump, plus bathroom and kitchen extractor fans. 

Security screens have been installed on the front and back doors and the exteriors of some villages have been repainted. Locks have been upgraded to a master key system in case of emergencies.

To complete the upgrade programme, over the next five years Council will install double-glazing in all units, beginning at Wallace Court in Cambridge during June.  

Property manager John Miles said Waipa District Council has a strong commitment to pensioner housing with plans to build more units over the next three years. Council continues to provide on-call support for tenants, as well as mowing lawns and removing garden waste. There are six-monthly smoke alarm checks and staff support tenants to liaise with government and health services.

Tenants pay independently-assessed market rents for the units; rents are not subsidised by ratepayers. Under Council’s policy, and after taking into account the government accommodation supplement, rents can be no greater than 30% of the gross amount of National Superannuation. 

Waipā’s pensioner housing units are now only available to those aged 65 and over. They continue to be in demand with more than 30 people currently on a waiting list to be housed.

Caption: Waipa District Council property advisor Sharon Rufer (left) and tenant Alma Gunn at Dallinger Court in Cambridge.Council property advisor Sharyn Rufer and tenant Alma Gunn

Page reviewed: 05 Apr 2019 2:59pm