Earthquakes occur frequently in New Zealand. Building regulations have developed over the years to ensure new houses are resilient and able to withstand earthquake forces. The main aim is to protect occupants from injury or loss of life.

There are also many steps that owners of existing houses can take to ensure their homes are better able to cope with ground shaking. Fixing heavy objects inside a house and strengthening the subfloor structure not only reduce the risk of occupant injury in a quake, but also reduce the potential costs of post-quake repairs. Several New Zealand studies have found that for each $1 spent in strengthening a home, around $4–5 can be saved in post-earthquake repairs. Making your home more resilient is an excellent investment.

This maintenance guide provides practical guidance for steps that can be taken now, often for a modest cost and in most cases without requiring building consent.