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  • Fibre installation in a small BC

    Hi all, I'm the first unit in a block of five and also the chairperson of the BC. I'm keen to get fibre hooked up to my unit .. the other owners are a bit luke warm on the idea. What is the process? Do I apply first for an install plan so that we know what will be involved ie. digging up the drive? Or does the comittee need to give consent first before we can even get that far?

  • #2
    Hi Mike

    I recommend that you get a plan first, there are no BC issues around doing that, and then present it to the BC. To get the plan, you will first have to apply to an internet retailer (e.g. Spark, Vodafone etc). Then once the plan has been developed, it will need sign off from the BC, the easiest way is to call an EGM and present a motion to get it installed.
    Jeremy Barker
    Hamilton Property Management
    www.hamiltonpm.co.nz

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    • #3
      Useful information here.

      https://www.chorus.co.nz/fibre-centre/mdu-process

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      • #4
        The fibre network is owned by different companies in different areas, and each network owner does things slightly differently. What town is the building located in?

        Unfortunately in most cases, some fibre network owners will not spend the time and money to get a plan on paper without getting consent from the body corporate first. This is because network designers cost money, and without consent already in place, it can be dead money to them.

        I work in the industry and find this a common problem ie building owners want to see the plan before they provide consent, the network owner won't create a plan until consent is given.

        Definitely do get an order in with your preferred retailer as soon as you can. Ensure you advise your retailer the name and contact details for the body corporate, (including your own name as chairperson). Once the network owner receives the order, the consent process will begin with the chairperson being contacted. At this stage you can advise the network owner that you wish for the job to be scoped and a plan supplied prior to final consent being given. This will allow you to call a body corp meeting to discuss the proposal prior to approving or declining it.

        I hope this helps. If you have further questions just let me know

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        • #5
          I'm doing it in Rotorua and Auckland currently. You have to get every owner to agree before they will do it. They will do a complete plan with aerial pics for you first then you have to sell it to every owner. They are quite pushy and bullies so you have to really hound them to get questions answered or get anything changed. We got the cable laying completely changed as they were doing it the shortest route instead of the best route. Took quite a few emails and phone calls.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Merlot Mike View Post
            Hi all, I'm the first unit in a block of five and also the chairperson of the BC. I'm keen to get fibre hooked up to my unit .. the other owners are a bit luke warm on the idea. What is the process? Do I apply first for an install plan so that we know what will be involved ie. digging up the drive? Or does the comittee need to give consent first before we can even get that far?
            As chairperson you can get Chorus to do the preliminary work as to what would be involved, when you present it to other owners make sure they're aware that there is no cost involved to them and that they have a choice as to whether to connect it to their homes, but it means its there for further if they want to do it at a later stage.
            We had a problem in our complex the first time round because some owners thought it would cost them. -after they were told there was no cost and they didn't have to have it connected to their individual homes they were fine.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by SPerfect View Post
              As chairperson you can get Chorus to do the preliminary work as to what would be involved, when you present it to other owners make sure they're aware that there is no cost involved to them and that they have a choice as to whether to connect it to their homes, but it means its there for further if they want to do it at a later stage.
              We had a problem in our complex the first time round because some owners thought it would cost them. -after they were told there was no cost and they didn't have to have it connected to their individual homes they were fine.
              It's worth noting that only standard installations are free, and every fibre network operator has their own definition of a standard installation, so until Chorus (or whoever it is) completes their site scope, they cannot say for sure whether there will be any charge for the fibre reticulation or not.

              I have provisioned several orders where the body corporate received a 5 figure quote to have their building reticulated with fibre. I have also dealt with quite a few company director types who have rather nice homes down long driveways. Some of these people have received quite eye watering quotes for non standard installation due to the distance of their actual dwelling from the road.

              Having said that, this enquiry sounds like a small block of detached or semi detached townhouses. Unless they are a long way from the road (more than 30 metres) then it is likely (but not certain) that there will be no charge to reticulate enough fibre for each unit.

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              • #8
                Who wouldnt want an additional bonus for their tenants supplied for free? As long as they dont stick it on the fence you're sweet.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by SimonW View Post
                  It's worth noting that only standard installations are free, and every fibre network operator has their own definition of a standard installation, so until Chorus (or whoever it is) completes their site scope, they cannot say for sure whether there will be any charge for the fibre reticulation or not.

                  I have provisioned several orders where the body corporate received a 5 figure quote to have their building reticulated with fibre. I have also dealt with quite a few company director types who have rather nice homes down long driveways. Some of these people have received quite eye watering quotes for non standard installation due to the distance of their actual dwelling from the road.

                  Having said that, this enquiry sounds like a small block of detached or semi detached townhouses. Unless they are a long way from the road (more than 30 metres) then it is likely (but not certain) that there will be no charge to reticulate enough fibre for each unit.
                  Thanks for your info Simon. Yes it's a small block of five townhouses in Auckland built in the 1970s... each unit shares a party wall with the next. Chorus are putting fibre in on our street at the moment. Mine's the closest one to the road, only about 7 metres away. The existing copper lines seem to pop up from the ground at my wall and enter the complex via a conduit there. I'm hoping they can feed the fibre in that way and not have to dig up the drive which the neighbours might be unhappy about. Do you have an opinion regarding the reliability of aerial vs ground laid fibre btw?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by andyp2010 View Post
                    Who wouldnt want an additional bonus for their tenants supplied for free? As long as they dont stick it on the fence you're sweet.
                    Quite right, although most of the units are owner-occupied.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by SPerfect View Post
                      As chairperson you can get Chorus to do the preliminary work as to what would be involved, when you present it to other owners make sure they're aware that there is no cost involved to them and that they have a choice as to whether to connect it to their homes, but it means its there for further if they want to do it at a later stage.
                      We had a problem in our complex the first time round because some owners thought it would cost them. -after they were told there was no cost and they didn't have to have it connected to their individual homes they were fine.
                      So Chorus would be happy to offer an plan before the consents are signed? That would be good.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by artemis View Post
                        Thanks, yes I've seen that... just wasn't sure about the chicken-and-egg situation with needing consent to get a plan/needing a plan to get consent.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by HPM View Post
                          Hi Mike

                          I recommend that you get a plan first, there are no BC issues around doing that, and then present it to the BC. To get the plan, you will first have to apply to an internet retailer (e.g. Spark, Vodafone etc). Then once the plan has been developed, it will need sign off from the BC, the easiest way is to call an EGM and present a motion to get it installed.
                          Thanks.. I'm relieved to hear that it is possible to get a plan to present to the other owners before I ask them to say yes.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Merlot Mike View Post
                            Thanks for your info Simon. Yes it's a small block of five townhouses in Auckland built in the 1970s... each unit shares a party wall with the next. Chorus are putting fibre in on our street at the moment. Mine's the closest one to the road, only about 7 metres away. The existing copper lines seem to pop up from the ground at my wall and enter the complex via a conduit there. I'm hoping they can feed the fibre in that way and not have to dig up the drive which the neighbours might be unhappy about. Do you have an opinion regarding the reliability of aerial vs ground laid fibre btw?
                            Hi Mike,

                            My experience is that a lot of copper cabling laid underground in the '70s and early '80s was direct buried in the ground - ie it may have a short section of duct at either end where it comes out of the ground, but the rest of the cable is buried in the ground with no duct. This means Chorus cannot follow the same path as the copper. In these cases, they'd need to lay a new duct for fibre to be laid into.

                            This could be done by a variety of methods depending on several factors - the distance being one, and the ground conditions (soil, river stones, rock etc) being the other. In many instances they can directional drill or use a mole plow (dig a pilot hole, drop the mole in, it plows it's way to where it's required, and they dig it out at the other end). Open trenching is not their preferred option because it's messy, time consuming and not aesthetically pleasing to some people. The can also clip the cable to boundary fencing but I am not a fan of this method for several reasons - if you need to replace a rotting fence in 5 years time it could be a real pain!

                            Comparing aerial reliability with underground installations is not an easy measure as most of the time you don't get a choice. If your existing copper service lead (phone cable) is overhead, then that is the way Chorus will install your fibre in the majority of cases. If you have copper overhead but want your fibre underground, Chorus will charge you for this. You will only get free underground installation if your copper is already underground.

                            In my opinion, there are pros and cons with each. Once could argue that an overhead cable is susceptible to damage in high winds, and conversely an underground cable is easily hit by a spade in your garden (although the outer sheath is very very tough). Fibre in the ground is generally not affected by flood waters etc unless the roadside cabinet that feeds it is also underwater - then there is a problem. Cable cuts do happen but are very rare on private property - they are almost always on roads or footpaths and affect many customers area wide. Aerial fibre cables crossing the road can be damaged by oversized vehicles but again this is quite rare.

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                            • #15
                              UPDATE for those who might be interested. So, I have managed to navigate the tangled maze of Chorus's MDU consent. The Body Corp here handled the voting process internally but it wasn't straightforward because Chorus would not put together a plan before consent was given. So I approached the other owners and said "let's consent to scope only" (even though from Chorus's point of view you consent outright to installation) and if we don't like the plan they come up with we can cancel installation if we wish. Once we received the plan we discussed it, make a few tweaks, and took another vote to make it official. This whole process took months and a lot of phone calls to Chorus and their sub-contractors. It seems bizarre that Chorus does not have a more Body Corporate friendly consent procedure in place. Next up will be the install itself and I'll be keeping a close eye on them while they are working.

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