Council officials say 632 properties affected by December's severe storm in Nelson and Tasman have now been inspected by the Earthquake Commission, with another 162 to go.
The record rainfall caused flooding and landslip damage from Nelson city to Golden Bay.
The Earthquake Commission expects to make an initial response to all claims by the end of the month though visits by geotechnical engineers might not be completed until March.
The region's civil defence emergency management group says 91 homes in Nelson and 22 homes in Tasman are still subject to notices forbidding access.
It says the local councils are acting as fast as possible to have the notices removed, once the EQC has informed them of the results of its inspections.