Dodgy developers watch out – the NSW Building Commission has just been boosted from 40 officers to 400. This much needed confidence boost for building quality has arrived for NSW homebuyers with the official opening of Building Commission NSW this week.
Delivering a standalone regulator was a key election promise of the Minns Labor Government, the state’s first ever dedicated building regulator ensuring builders and the homes they construct in NSW are compliant, safe and durable.
The change means NSW will go from just 40 staff dedicated to enforcing quality and standards in the building industry to more than 400, a 900 percent increase in oversight. Building Commission NSW, led by Commissioner David Chandler, opened its doors this week on December 4.
“In recent years we’ve heard horror stories about defects in apartment buildings but we’re turning the tide with Building Commission NSW” says Premier Chris Minns.
Funded by a $24 million downpayment in the NSW Budget, Building Commission NSW is a one stop shop for regulation, licensing and oversight of the sector.
The newly established agency will lift the existing Office of the Building Commissioner out of Fair Trading to give staff dedicated resources and a clear focus on the building sector.
While the NSW Government is committed to tackling the NSW housing supply crisis after over a decade of inaction, the government will not allow quantity of homes to come at the expense of quality.
“Buying a home is the great Australian dream,” says Minister for Building, Anoulack Chanthivong, “Building Commission NSW will help make sure it doesn’t turn into a nightmare.”
This, he says, is another milestone in the work the NSW Government has already completed to lift standards across the industry, including:
- New laws to dramatically expand the Building Commissioner’s powers over freestanding residential homes.
- Elevating the sector to cabinet level with the first ever Minister for Building
- Boosting the capacity of smaller builders to deliver quality medium density housing through initiatives like BuiltIt NSW.
Today also marks the official completion of Parq in Bexley, the first building in Australia to be covered by Decennial Liability Insurance (DLI), a decade long guarantee against serious defects.
Parq’s builder Urban Property has also announced that Decennial Liability Insurance will be rolled out across all future projects. Owners in buildings covered by DLI can make a claim to get defects repaired for up to a decade after completion, whether their builder is still operating or not.
“When I started this work everyone was driving towards the bottom of quality, now we are all working towards the top and Urban Property are a great example.” said David Chandler, NSW Building Commissioner.
NSW is the first state in the nation to offer decennial liability insurance and the NSW Government recently passed laws to encourage more builders to sign up and protect buyers.