The MP for Dunedin South says many families are still living in motels because of the damage done to their homes by this week's floods.
About 175 millimetres of rain fell on the city in 24 hours on Wednesday.
Recovery teams, including Red Cross personnel from Christchurch and Timaru, have spent days working from a flood relief centre in south Dunedin, helping residents clean up their properties.
More than 100 homes in the area were flooded during last week's severe flooding event.
The relief centre has now closed but Clare Curran said many people were dealing with permanent damage to their homes.
"Some are being put up by their insurance companies in motels, people are staying with family members. The council has paid for some people to stay in motels, particularly those who are insured."
She said many homes had been permanently damaged, and insurance claims would soon show the extent of it.
The Dunedin City Council is urging anyone whose carpets were damaged by floodwaters to throw them out or get them professionally cleaned due to concerns over contamination.
It said carpet may have been contaminated with sewage and could be infected with e-coli bacteria, and that it may also also contain heavy metal residues from tarseal and oil and should not be dried out and re-used.
The Council's Recovery Manager Ruth Stokes said it was best to throw out the carpet and make an insurance claim or apply to the recently-announced mayoral flood fund.