Researchers are looking at how to help improve the resilience of the types of homes that performed poorly in the Christchurch earthquakes.
In a project launched on Thursday, engineers from the Building Research Association of New Zealand will use computer modelling to assess the impact of simulated seismic action on modern homes with more complex configurations.
They will get support for their research from the Earthquake Commission.
The research has been prompted by findings that less complex homes in Christchurch performed better in the quakes than those built beyond the limits of New Zealand Standard 3604.
The experts will examine how the bracing systems of different stiffness interact during a seismic event.
BRANZ project leader Angela Liu says it is aiming to find better ways to improve the performance of more complex houses.