A group of Waitakere Gardens retirement village residents have complained to a state organisation about Metlifecare's treatment over repairs to residences at a west Auckland site.
Dennis Brown, representing the affected residents, said he is waiting to hear back from staff at the Commission For Financial Capability on the complaint over village owner Metlifecare's actions.
"I have put the residents' formal complaints forward for a disputes panel hearing, which is happening shortly," Brown said.
Glen Sowry, Metlifecare chief executive, said matters were being resolved and a meeting held this week was "positive and constructive".
Troy Churton of the commission confirmed the complaint was lodged.
"There is a dispute panel proceeding in place. I understand there is a strict direction of the panellist that Mr Brown appears to be breaching by inviting media attention at this stage," Churton said.
Sowry indicated part of the residents' building was dangerous.
"Some of the affected balconies are not safe to be used and we have been working closely with affected residents to manage health and safety risks," he said.
However, he also admitted not all had gone well to start with but said the situation had been turned around and was now positive and constructive.
"The initial proposal to remediate the Rosecourt building balconies was not effectively communicated to residents which caused uncertainty and concern. As soon as this was brought to my attention, we suspended that programme of work in order to engage with affected residents to come up with a less intrusive and more acceptable repair solution," Sowry said.
Changes were planned to 16 apartments in the Rosecourt Building as part of a $44m four-villages repair programme in the next few years, he said.
"We are remediating the balconies and walkways on 16 apartments. We are going to be doing repairs and design and build deficiencies on balconies, walkways and we will reclad the Rosecourt building. Part of the proposed design solution includes creating conservatories around the existing balconies. To achieve council consent we will be required to upgrade the fire engineering of the building," Sowry said.
"The safety and wellbeing of all of our residents takes absolute priority. When building work is conducted on the balconies we will be relocating residents from their apartments to other apartments within the Waitakere Gardens village. All costs associated with this activity will be borne by Metlifecare," Sowry said.
The commission oversees the complaints process under the Retirement Villages Act.
Retirement village residents must first complain to a village owner, then if they remain unhappy an independent dispute panel resolution procedure is established, the commission says.
The residents at Waitakere Gardens complained about what they believed was Metlifecare's lack of communication. Residents expressed fears about their living conditions during the remediation process, and the possibility for noise and dust.
Brown said this afternoon that yesterday's meeting with Metlifecare had not resolved issues, the complaint stood and people remained extremely unhappy.