News Asia23 Feb 2021

Australia:Insurers and builders pledge to improve sharing of info on housing resilience

| 23 Feb 2021

Both the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) and Master Builders Australia (MBA) have committed to working with the government to improve information sharing between the sectors, and to improving consumer information on housing resilience.

ICA CEO Andrew Hall said there needs to be greater sharing and coordination of data between relevant industries and State Governments.

“An advisory committee established and funded by government is recommended for the collation of data and the reinforcement of resilience resources,” Mr Hall said. “There is a tremendous community benefit in sharing impact assessment data as it allows for funds and other benefits (such as emergency accommodation) to be made available to residents without the insurer having to wait until the property is accessible.”

MBA CEO Ms Denita Wawn said it is important to get good information out to the building supply chain as well as the broader community about what’s needed to build more resilient homes.

“Developing best practice guidance and understanding costs and benefits is the first step in the process of getting building standards right,” Ms Wawn said. “This should be supported by education programmes for the building supply chain and the broader community that address how improvements to existing homes can improve building resilience.”

The two associations convened the Building Stronger Homes Roundtable last week during which was proposed a number of disaster mitigation and resilience initiatives that will help to strengthen existing homes and communities against extreme weather events. The Roundtable held at Parliament House, Canberra, was attended by representatives from the property, banking, real estate and architecture industries, as well as state and federal government departments.

The initiative focused on the financial impacts of natural disasters, the cost of rebuilding and the learnings from existing resilient homes programmes, with the aim of creating actionable change.

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