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Information for homeowners: Down the track

What are my obligations once the building process is complete?

You will need to ensure that you take out insurance for the property as the insurance risk for the completed works will now transfer to you.  The maintenance liability period (defects liability period) will commence from practical completion to which you will have the opportunity to raise any defects which are to be rectified by the builder.  You should take care to ensure that you’re compliant with your obligations under the contract (usually there is one written list to be provided to the builder during this time) and that if rectification works are required that you work with the builder to provide access as required.  Your obligations as the home owner with regard to maintenance will also now commence. You should also keep your building contract and associated documents in a safe place for at least 6 years from practical completion.

What should the builder do for maintenance?

The builder may have to return to your property to inspect and/or rectify any defects listed by you during the maintenance services period (also known as the defects liability period).  The builder does not have responsibility for the day to day maintenance of your home – this is now up to you as the home owner.  You may receive information from your builder regarding the ongoing maintenance to your home once you move in.  If you do have any questions though, your builder would be happy to chat to you about these. 

If there are problems and the builder has died, disappeared or become insolvent, what do I do?

If you are having issues with the building and your builder is no longer around, you can contact the insurer who provided the residential building insurance or fidelity fund cover for your home who may be able to assist. The insurer will be able to provide you with the relevant claim forms and further information about the claims process, if necessary.