Queensland property developers and builders are being challenged not to cut corners in the delivery of new strata title projects throughout the state.
Strata Community Australia (Qld) is calling on developers to take more responsibility for building defects before handing a strata building over to owners. It says incidences of shoddy workmanship during the construction of strata title projects are on the rise.
According to Simon Barnard, SCA (Qld) president, once a new building has been handed over to owners and the strata scheme has been registered, any necessary building repairs become the responsibility of owners and the body corporate committee. This means that any building defects that go unnoticed until after a scheme has been registered are likely to result in costly repairs charged to owners or costly (and potentially lengthy) legal battles against builders.
Mr Barnard believes builders and developers should be taking more responsibility to ensure owners are not facing excessive expenses as a result of inadequate workmanship. “When a new building is constructed, it is the responsibility of the builder to ensure it meets the standards of the Queensland Building Services Authority.
“Developers are not legally responsible for ensuring the building meets the required standards, this is the responsibility of the builder but to protect their name we would encourage developers to double check work completed by builders. If corners have been cut during the construction process, and owners are unaware of issues until after they have signed on the dotted line, any building defects effectively become their problem. These defects are not only costly at some point but they can affect the comfort or even safety of tenants in a building, and may also affect rental incomes and property values,” he said, but he added that owners should select trades people carefully as well.
“A major factor is not choosing the cheapest quote every time. If a developer is willing to only engage quality contractors they will build their reputation as well as each development. It is about balancing quality with value for money,” he said.
Mr Barnard said that many bodies corporate are not putting up with poor construction and are actively pursuing builders who do not do the right thing through the Building Services Authority.
“Sadly, there will always be dodgy builders who cut corners to save money or time. And it is difficult for potential owners to always spot issues before they purchase a property, so I would definitely be encouraging developers to double check the work that has been completed by builders – after all, it is their reputation at stake.”
It is hoped a new taskforce charged with establishing a tourism industry code of practice for Queensland will be set up in the next fortnight.
A recent review found Queensland’s tourism products are declining in quality because operators are not making enough profit to invest in their businesses.
Ms Stuckey says the taskforce will include representatives from Cairns, the Whitsundays and the Gold Coast.
“I have accepted the recommendations and those will see an implementation taskforce set up,” she said.
“This way the industry will be able to regulate themselves with a code of practice that they agree to and a code of practice that will allow for the flexibility that’s required for each region.
“The taskforce is coming out of the Industry First Response money which has been allocated in the budget.
“I understand that we’ve actually just put out expressions of interest for nominations to make sure that that taskforce has a representative from here and the Whitsundays as well as Gold Coast.
“It is chaired by somebody from QTIC.
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