Housing woes for ski field crew

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Management at Mt Hutt ski field are keen to hear from anyone with a property, or accommodation suitable for ski staff.

Properties, rooms and sleepouts are all being considered for Mt Hutt ski staff this year as a shortage of readily available accommodation hits the district.

Seasonal staff have even taken to posting individually online to secure housing.

Mt Hutt human resources/administrator Deidra O’Shea said up to 300 staff arrived in the district each winter from late May/early June, through to mid-October.

“Each year around 50-60 per cent of these staff are returning from previous seasons, so many from this group will have contacts for accommodation already as they usually will go back to the same place as the previous winter,” she said.

“Whilst some of our new staff will be already living in or close to the area, most will be planning to relocate either from elsewhere in New Zealand, Australia and further afield specifically to come and work for us for the winter.”

The shortage in accommodation has seen efforts ramped up for staff housing.

“Methven is ideal because the team start early in the morning (departing Methven around 7.15am, sometimes earlier),” she said.

Crew are also team focused so will generally want to live in Methven for social aspects, as well as skiing on their days off.

Most accommodation needed is for single workers, but there are couples, and furnished accommodation is ideal for the 16 weeks they are employed.

“There seems to be a shortage of short term accommodation currently in Methven, in the past staff would come and stay in a backpackers say for the first few weeks. From there they would meet other employees, making it more viable to commit to house shares etc”.

“Without this opportunity for face to face interactions the chance to bond and form initial friendships, everyone is now understandably posting in various online groups on an individual basis. This does make it tricky for them to commit to a whole house so many would love to rent a room in a home or sleepout instead.

Anyone with a property, or accommodation, suitable for ski staff can contact hr@nullmthutt.co.nz, she said.

“Properties, rooms and sleepouts all considered. Happy to answer questions and help people who have a spare room navigate the process.”