Construction projects often start with a meeting of minds and good intent between property owners and builders to progress the build through to its natural conclusion. During the construction journey, occasionally this collective view deviates resulting in the property owner and their builder/contractor being in disagreement over aspects of the build. While litigation always remains an option, the WA Building Commission (“Commission”) provides a range of services to support consumers and their builder/contractor to assist in the resolution of building construction disputes. The Commission website provides extensive information on the services and related processes.
Where property owners and builders/contractors choose to utilise the Commissions services there are concise processes that need to be followed. At a certain stage in the process the Commission may request that either the Complainant or Respondent support their position through an independent expert report. On occasions, the Commission may indicate that the issue will not progress without an independent expert report.
An independent expert report is designed to represent an impartial assessment of the facts of a situation. Based on the capture of very specific and detailed evidence from the construction site, the report reconciles the ‘as built’ issues against the approved construction plans, the Building Code of Australia, relevant Australian Standards, industry standards of acceptable workmanship and accepted industry tolerances. In what can often be a highly emotive and charged environment the report attempts to provide clarity and understanding on the underlying issues where that objectivity may not exist.
Houspect is able to provide independent expert reports in the format required by the Commission to enable complaints to be progressed or defended. The reports are also prepared in accordance with both the Commission Reporting Guidelines and Australian Standards, providing you with a clear and comprehensive report describing the issues under dispute. The independent expert report reviews each item contained in a complaint to the Commission.
The report format, as required by the Commission, is intended to represent a fair and unbiased description of each construction defect from the perspective of an independent expert.
Progressing the resolution of a construction dispute through the Commission has a variety of advantages and disadvantages. Potentially, the most significant advantage is that from a cost perspective it can be relatively inexpensive.
The key benefit of progressing with an independent expert report is that it should bring absolute clarity to the underlying issues and enable a complaint to be progressed or defended through the Commission.
It should be noted that the Commission has extensive powers and can issue a variety of remediation orders including an order for the Respondent or Complainant to pay the costs of the other party obtaining the independent expert report.
In WA, building inspections and building inspectors are unregulated. As a consequence it is important that you have total confidence in the quality, skills, experience and professionalism of your building inspector. At Houspect WA:
Houspect WA or its Directors maintain a number of important professional memberships including:
During the 20 plus years of operating in WA, Houspect has produced in excess of 50,000 quality building inspections.
Buy, build and invest with confidence with Houspect WA.