Mortgage holidays – what you need to know

Banks have begun taking applications for mortgage holidays from consumers affected by Covid-19. So, Consumer NZ looks at the pros and cons of deferring mortgage repayments. What is a mortgage holiday? A mortgage holiday lets you temporarily stop making repayments on your home loan if you’re under financial pressure. Homeowners who are struggling financially as a result of the Covid-19 …

Rapid construction restart is the key to economic recovery

By CCNZ chief executive Peter Silcock. Government guidance on handling construction contracts will give many construction companies the confidence to continue to employ their people and take a lead role in the economic recovery following the lockdown, say New Zealand’s civil contractors. Civil Contractors New Zealand chief executive, Peter Silcock says government commitment to a fair and consistent approach to …

Planners cautiously welcome Government’s fast track consenting

By NZPI treasurer Jonathan Clease & NZPI chair Karyn Sinclair The New Zealand Planning Institute (NZPI) cautiously welcomes the Government’s announcement of fast-tracked consenting for eligible development and infrastructure projects, but says it is important that environmental and community outcomes are not sacrificed in the process. Minister for the Environment, David Parker announced in the first week of May that …

Post-pandemic property – Where does the housing market go from here?

The latest QV House Price Index data for March provides us with a view of the housing market as New Zealand headed into lockdown on 25th March. But what it doesn’t tell us is what happens beyond the proverbial brick wall that the COVID-19 lockdown has created. The data shows the property market was continuing to perform strongly throughout early-mid …

Does COVID-19 allow builders’ clients to change their minds?

By Commerical lawyer, Geoff Hardy. At the time I wrote this, we were a week into Alert Level 3 and we were preparing for the transition to Level 2. Building firms had returned to work but they were having to observe all the social distancing, personal protection equipment, hygiene, contract tracing, and other precautions that applied to both those levels. …

Building our way back: COVID-19 response plan for the construction sector

The construction sector has an important role to play in kick-starting the New Zealand economy. To support this, the Construction Sector Accord has temporarily shifted focus from industry transformation to industry resilience and recovery. The Accord is a collaboration between construction sector leaders from across government and industry. The Accord Steering Group (ASG) has been asked by the Government to …

How 5G “network slicing”can help the construction industry

Burcin Kaplanoglu – Executive director Innovation, Oracle Construction and Engineering, www.oracle.com/nz As more stories come out about the potential use of 5G across different industries, the construction industry is one that could quickly see specific – and significant – benefits from the technology. One such use case could be around the “network slicing” capability of 5G, which enables communication service …

Gazing into the post COVID-19 future of NZ infrastructure

By Jon Grayson – Chief executive, NZ Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga, www.infracom.govt.nz The average New Zealander rarely gives infrastructure a second thought unless it isn’t working. It’s in times of crisis that we start to value the essentials such as energy, clean water, good telecommunications and transport systems. Life as we know it in this country is changing rapidly. However, …

Force majeure and COVID-19

By Marcus Beveridge and Tina Hwang from Queen City Law In law, a force majeure isoften referred to as an “act ofGod”, an event that no partiesto a contract would normallyhave anticipated. Many contracts include standardforce majeure clauses, but theNZS 3910 has no default forcemajeure clause. The COVID-19 pandemic, the declaration of a state of national emergency on 25 March …