New consumer protections for building work

Press Release – New Zealand Government

Building and Housing Minister Dr Nick Smith is welcoming new consumer protections that will require builders to have written contracts, provide information on their relevant skills, experience and qualifications, and disclose their insurance and …
Hon Dr Nick Smith
Minister for Building and Housing

31 December 2014 Media Statement
New consumer protections for building work

Building and Housing Minister Dr Nick Smith is welcoming new consumer protections that will require builders to have written contracts, provide information on their relevant skills, experience and qualifications, and disclose their insurance and warranty cover from tomorrow.

“These new requirements are about improving how building work is contracted in New Zealand. They ensure increased professionalism, open disclosure and clear expectations about what work is to be done, at what price, and in what timeframe,” Dr Smith says.

“Building and construction activity in New Zealand is expected to reach unprecedented levels in New Zealand. This makes it all the more important that we have an efficient industry in place that is capable of delivering the quantity and quality we need.

The new requirements, which apply to building work over a minimum price of $30,000, are:
• A written contract (with specific clauses around warranties, dispute resolution, remedies);
• A checklist for consumers with tips on engaging builders and managing the project; and
• Mandatory disclosure of information by building contractors (business information, key contacts and their role and qualifications, insurance cover held, warranties offered).

Instant fines of $500 will be applied for failing to provide any of the above.

“These measures will reinforce the good practice of many contractors while constraining people only interested in making money at the expense of doing quality job. They are part of a wider programme of work to better our building and construction industry, which also includes more robust occupational regulation and improved construction contracts law,” Dr Smith says.

Further information is available at: www.dbh.govt.nz/building-amendment-act-2013

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