Make your home safer

Making your home safer will reduce the damage during an earthquake and allow you to stay in your home, even if it is a bit messed up.

 Use the following check list as a starter to make your home safe.

Check your foundations:

Check your foundations

  • Has there been any excavation around the piles?
  • Secure the bearers to the piles
  • Replace any rotten timber

Floor to ceiling:

  • Secure hot water cylinders, free-standing wood burners and heavy or tall furniture.
  • Provide additional support for unreinforced masonry walls.
  • Secure water header tanks.
  • Check brick chimneys are properly secured. If you don’t use your chimney then remove it.
  • Replace any rotten or missing rafters and struts in your roof

If you need help, get a professional builder in to check your home
Find out more about getting your home quake checked

Secure bookshelves, televisions and water heaters

If you're renting

It’s in your landlord’s best interests if your home is still liveable after an earthquake, so talk with them about making your home safer, using this guide.

Two hundred litre water tanks available from your local councilStore water

After an earthquake, water isn’t going to come out of the tap, so you need to have an emergency water supply. The more you can store, the better. You will need to have enough water to last your entire household a week.

The average person uses 1,540 litres per week normally

Recommended – 140 litres per person per week
Drinking water, food preparation, hand washing and other basic hygiene (brushing teeth & a sponge bath)  

Minimum – 20 litres per person per week
Drinking water and very basic hygiene

Buy a water tank so you’ll have water during an emergency.  The council's sell 200 litre water tanks, they are affordable and easy to install yourself.  
Buy a 200 litre water tank

If you can’t get a water tank, storing at least some water is better than none!

  • Use large, plastic drink bottles.  Don’t use old milk bottles because the trace amounts of milk will contaminate the water.
  • Fill each container with tap water until it overflows.  Place the lid on tightly and store in a cool, dark place.
  • Clean and refill the bottles every 12 months.

Storing water

Find out more about safe water storage

What goes in must come out!
Find out how to manage your waste when you can’t flush your toilet


Now learn about what you can do NEXT WEEKEND