Aged 75 and with health problems Mavis Rhodes doesn't know what to do if her Anzac Pde house has to be moved or lifted.

"Honest to God, I have no idea. We are all at the mercy," she said.

Horizons Regional Council has decided not to raise or extend the stopbanks that protect Anzac Pde houses. Instead the council will look for ways the area can handle floods - such as moving houses, raising them or making them easier to repair.

Mrs Rhodes' house was one of the worst hit in the June 2015 flood, with water above its windowsills. Since then she's once had to leave with all her possessions, for a flood that didn't eventuate.


"Next time I will just leave everything and take my personal stuff," she said.

She was among four property owners the Chronicle talked to in the lowest stretch of Anzac Pde. All of them knew about Horizons' decision, and none of them were surprised by it.

"I've been here 38 years and nothing surprises me any more," Mrs Rhodes said

Her neighbour Ellen Beale has only been in her house since December, and loves living there.

"I don't see how they could build something high enough without making it look really ugly and horrible over the road," she said.

A few doors down, Ramari Te Uamairangi supported Horizons's decision, saying it was logical.

"[Stopbanks] were only going to be an interim measure, not a viable long term solution. It makes sense to come up with a long term strategy, as opposed to putting band aids on a problem that's only going to worsen."

Another neighbour could see Horizons' point, because having the Matarawa Stream come in behind the stopbanks causes a problem.


Mrs Beale and Mrs Rhodes are waiting to see what alternatives are offered to them. Mrs Rhodes said selling the house where she has lived for 38 years wouldn't make enough to buy another one.

Mrs Beale is willing to move if she likes the new place. If her house was raised she worried she might become trapped in it by floodwaters.

Mrs Te Uamairangi said her family would be fine with moving.

"We will make the best of any given situation that's put in front of us."

One of their neighbours, who did not want to be named, had his property flooded for the first time in June 2015. He had been planning to sell before that.

"It's getting too much to do the gardens. We are looking to build another property," he said.