Swanky $8m house springs a leak

By Rachel Grunwell

An $8.3 million mansion on New Zealand's swankiest street is a leaky home - and its Rich List owner is believed to have spent hundreds of thousands on repairs.

Sleepyhead boss Craig Turner and his wife Cara Pollock-Turner had to vacate their pink Italian Palladio-style home on Orakei's Paritai Drive because "it was no longer healthy to occupy", according to Auckland City Council records.

Documents held by the council say lack of watertightness had caused structural damage. Eaves had to be built and the house needed waterproofing and recladding.

One document said recladding could cost $500,000, and another mentioned an $800,000 price tag.

When the Herald on Sunday first contacted Turner, he said there were "a number of issues with the house" and "there's a lot of money involved".

A few weeks later he said his lawyer had instructed him not to comment and refused to say who was at fault and whether any party could be held liable for damages.

Greg Sewell, of D D Consultants, said he was involved in documentation work over efforts to "remedy" the damage but could not comment.

Council regulatory claims manager, Sally Grey, said the organisation had issued a consent for building works and experts were monitoring progress.

The Turner family - including brothers Graeme, Craig and Peter, who oversee the Sleepyhead business - were worth about $70m in last year's National Business Review Rich List.

Craig Turner is not the first big name in a leaky home fight.

Last year it was reported that league legend Matthew Ridge and his TV star ex-wife Sally Ridge were among a group of people being sued by a couple as part of a $680,000 leaky home lawsuit. The couple had bought the Ridges' St Mary's Bay home for $2.75m in 2001. The Ridges denied liability.

A $12m Takapuna mansion was the subject of litigation in 2007.

Another Paritai Drive house, worth $4m and formerly owned by Auckland Mayor John Banks, needed an estimated $250,000 worth of repairs in 2003.

Between 30,000 and 80,000 New Zealand homes are believed to be leaky, with estimated repair costs anywhere between $5.4 billion and $14.4b.

In February, Building and Construction Minister Maurice Williamson said he had ordered research to confirm the number of leaky homes still in need of repair. Once the research was finished, the Government would decide on the best form of central government intervention to address those problems, Williamson told mayors.

- Herald on Sunday

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW

© Copyright 2017, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production bpcf04 at 26 Mar 2017 20:54:12 Processing Time: 514ms