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A strongly worded letter to clean up the building industry

By johnboy - 27 May 2010 10

The ABC brings word that Andrew Barr has cleaned up the dodgy builders of Canberra with a letter to the building industry associations telling them off for not making progress in reducing their profit margins.

Now Mr Barr has written to the major building industry bodies saying they have not made enough progress coming up with solutions.

“There are issues on both sides of this debate but I’m increasingly of the view that the more we’ve been exploring this and looking at the various carrot and stick measures that should be put in place, that we should be bringing the stick out a bit more,” he said.

Mr Barr says the Government is considering a number of changes including extending building warranties, introducing mandatory inspections and making builders fund repairs to their buildings.

“Where there are particular areas that are identified as poor workmanship, poor behaviour in the building and construction industry, people will be named and shamed,” he said.

Which is interesting when you look at what ACTPLA’s Neil Savery had to say during Friday’s appearance on Stateline (well worth watching the video if you missed it)

What’s Your opinion?


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10 Responses to
A strongly worded letter to clean up the building industry
Mr Lubberlubber 5:24 pm 19 Jul 11

waterlilly said :

I have lived in the Kingston area for 25 years and know it well. My advice to anyone thinking of buying a unit in the inner south is to check other developments built by the same company. The Kingston Foreshore is renowned for having shoddy workmanship and dodgy builders are left to do whatever they want, because our government allows them to self-regulate. I have been looking for another place to buy here in the inner south and my research has uncovered some frightening facts. I would avoid at all costs anything built by the Doma Group. They are currently building Bridgepoint and Dockside, and have built Viridian, which has a dreadful reputation. And now that people know of the problems at Viridian, the prices there are not likely to keep up with prices elsewhere in the property market. I feel sorry for people who bought them off the plan. And I feel sorry for people who will buy Bridgepoint and Dockside off the plan. You have been warned!

I am sick of people bagging out Viridian – that is what keeps prices down, not the building. I had a unit there and it is not the same as Landmark and Gateway. All the problems that were in Viridian were fixed by the builder. It is a large building and I can understand how some things get missed. I think what is important is how the developer/builder responds when there is a problem and that was okay at Viridian. Incidentally, it was Chase that built Viridian, not Doma Group – they were the developer.

waterlilly 4:50 pm 07 May 11

I have lived in the Kingston area for 25 years and know it well. My advice to anyone thinking of buying a unit in the inner south is to check other developments built by the same company. The Kingston Foreshore is renowned for having shoddy workmanship and dodgy builders are left to do whatever they want, because our government allows them to self-regulate. I have been looking for another place to buy here in the inner south and my research has uncovered some frightening facts. I would avoid at all costs anything built by the Doma Group. They are currently building Bridgepoint and Dockside, and have built Viridian, which has a dreadful reputation. And now that people know of the problems at Viridian, the prices there are not likely to keep up with prices elsewhere in the property market. I feel sorry for people who bought them off the plan. And I feel sorry for people who will buy Bridgepoint and Dockside off the plan. You have been warned!

Trev 2:29 pm 28 May 10

Hm! The HIA reckons Canberra’s apartment builders are excellent, while the ABC quotes a building contractor who reckons shoddy workmanship is largely due to a lack of consumer vigilance: http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/05/28/2912159.htm

Wraith 9:29 pm 27 May 10

Jivrashia said :

The cat did it said :

Then we have to find a way round the interesting habit of some builders and developers of setting up a legal entity to construct a particular project, then dissolving said entity immediately following completion of construction, so there is no legal entity that can be held responsible for any substandard work on the project.

It can’t be that simple, can it??
I mean, if this true, that this tactic can almost certainly allow one to remove one’s liability legally (aka loophole) then, as a builder, you would be stupid not to exploit it to the full extent possible. You botch a job and you don’t have to come back to fix it!? It’s a dream job for people with no professionalism or moral.

You have a point, but one that could be easily avoided through due diligence when handing out contracts, oh wait I’m talking about Gov.co here aren’t I, point lost on them.

Jivrashia 3:56 pm 27 May 10

The cat did it said :

Then we have to find a way round the interesting habit of some builders and developers of setting up a legal entity to construct a particular project, then dissolving said entity immediately following completion of construction, so there is no legal entity that can be held responsible for any substandard work on the project.

It can’t be that simple, can it??
I mean, if this true, that this tactic can almost certainly allow one to remove one’s liability legally (aka loophole) then, as a builder, you would be stupid not to exploit it to the full extent possible. You botch a job and you don’t have to come back to fix it!? It’s a dream job for people with no professionalism or moral.

The cat did it 1:46 pm 27 May 10

The building industry has clearly demonstrated that it can’t be trusted with self-regulation, so the cost of independent inspection has to be directly factored into the final cost of construction. Then we have to find a way round the interesting habit of some builders and developers of setting up a legal entity to construct a particular project, then dissolving said entity immediately following completion of construction, so there is no legal entity that can be held responsible for any substandard work on the project.

Holden Caulfield 12:36 pm 27 May 10

Just watched the Stateline clip. Hmm, certainly puts one off wanting to ever buy a unit/apartment in this town.

johnboy 11:42 am 27 May 10

I dunno, he seems to always be in a hard hat and high vis in his publicity photos.

Waiting For Godot 11:37 am 27 May 10

Gee, I bet those burly building workers and their bosses are really quaking in their boots at being told off by Andrew. I would imagine his only knowledge of the industry has come from looking at the construction worker in The Village People.

Trev 10:48 am 27 May 10

Ooh, cut it out, Andrew, you’re scaring me!

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