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New AA service to help with household woes

Media Release: 5 March 2018

New AA service to help with household woes

Difficulty in finding a tradesperson has been a key catalyst for a new home emergency response service launched by the New Zealand Automobile Association (AA).

Called AA Home, the new service will take care of the hassle of finding a tradesperson to fix common household breakdowns like blocked or burst pipes, lockouts and electrical failures 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Launched as a joint venture between the AA and AA Insurance, AA Home aims to get a qualified tradesperson to an emergency within 60 minutes, or at a time to suit the householder.

A survey of a cross-section of 1.6 million AA Members found many were frustrated by the difficulty in getting a tradesperson to come quickly when they had a home emergency like a blocked toilet, leaking roof or no hot water.

AA Membership and Brand General Manager Dougal Swift says its research found AA Members are keen for a home service along the lines of AA Roadservice, which helps Members when their vehicles breakdown.

“Almost two thirds of those we surveyed said they had needed a tradesperson in the past 12 months,” Mr Swift says.

“But unless they were connected through friends or family, getting someone to fix the problem fast was often difficult.”

AA Home has partnered with Global Home Response (GHR), which will be responsible for delivering the service across New Zealand.

GHR has 10 years’ experience delivering a similar service in Australia and has criteria that tradespeople must meet before they are accredited to join AA Home. That criteria includes qualifications and exceptional customer service.

AA Home has already launched in Auckland and will be offered to AA Members and AA Insurance customers at a lower cost. The public will also be able to subscribe to the service, Mr Swift says.

AA Insurance Head of Marketing and Distribution Richard Park says while it isn’t hard to search the internet or use social media to find potential tradespeople to call, its research found getting someone trustworthy to respond quickly were two main concerns for customers.

“By joining AA Home, customers can be reassured they can find someone who has been accredited and is qualified to do the work. That peace-of-mind is very important for many people,” he says.

“For AA Insurance, we’re focussed on mitigating any damage from a problem as quickly as possible to help get our customers’ homes sorted.”

Two services will be offered. The first, AA Home Response will cost $32 per year for AA Members and AA Insurance customers, with non-Members paying $49. However, AA Insurance home and landlord customers will automatically be gifted AA Home Response with their policies.

Under this product, users pay a callout fee at the service’s predetermined hourly rates prior to the tradesperson being dispatched. Those rates are based on research on market rates for callout fees throughout different trades and areas.

The second service, AA Home Response Plus, will cost $179 per year for Members, with other homeowners and landlords paying $199. This subscription gives six free callouts per year, each including up to one hour of a tradesperson’s time, plus unlimited additional call outs on a pay per use basis.

The round-the-clock service, via 0800 224 663, has launched in the Auckland region and will gradually roll out to other centres.


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