Building Industry Update: New Practice Standard for Registered Certifiers

The NSW Government has released a new practice standard for registered certifiers. The standard has been developed as part of the building regulation reforms spearheaded by the NSW Building Commissioner, David Chandler OAM, and is focussed on certifiers of residential apartment buildings. The standard is intended to achieve the following: Provide a clear, accessible and specified standard of what is expected of certifiers in undertaking their role and functions. Clarify the professional obligations and conduct of certifiers as public officials. Reinforce the difference in the role of the certifier from builders and other building practitioners. Enhance the accountability and responsibility of certifiers. The practice standard is a comprehensive guide for certifiers on their obligations and walks certifiers through the following topics: Certifiers as public officials Conflicts of interest Construction certificates for building work Inspections of building work Occupation certificates Documentary evidence Compliance The standard has been prepared pursuant to section 14 of the Building and Development Certifiers Act 2018.  That section provides that a registered certifier’s conditions of registration may require the certifier to carry out their certification…

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NSW Building Reforms

Recently, there have been two new acts introduced in NSW that will have a considerable impact on the building and construction industry. Collectively known as ‘the Reforms’, these acts are: The Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020 (the DBP). The Residential Apartment Buildings (Compliance and Enforcement Powers) Act 2020 (the RAB). The objective of the Reforms is to ensure NSW’s building industry is constructing trustworthy buildings and delivering quality projects to consumers. The Reforms seek to increase the standard of current works, ensuring all work and materials used onsite are compliant with the Building Code of Australia (BCA) and Australian standards. The purpose behind the push to change the building and construction industry is to ensure the entire team involved in the construction process is both accountable and performing at optimum standard, rather than targeting individual players. The greatest accountability rests with the Developer (principal) as the individual/entity responsible for delivery of a product to consumers. The Reforms are to protect homeowners and ensure a quality and safe product. Part of this will see the regulator attending sites…

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NSW Parliament releases “Regulation of building standards, building quality and building disputes” final report. The final report of the Public Accountability Committee, “Regulation of building standards, building quality and building disputes” was tabled by NSW Parliament on 30 April 2020. The report and its 22 significant recommendations are being considered by the government which must provide a response within six months. The 22 recommendations from the lengthy report are as follows: Recommendation 1 That the NSW Government introduce and debate the powers bill granting the NSW Building Commissioner new powers to ensure building standards as a matter of urgency when the NSW Parliament is reconvened in May 2020, with prompt circulation of the proposed bill to members of Parliament. Recommendation 2 That the NSW Government resume debate on the Design and Building Practitioners Bill 2019 as a matter of urgency when the NSW Parliament is reconvened in May 2020. Recommendation 3 That the NSW Government empower the NSW Building Commissioner to oversee all licencing inspections, within the newly created Building Commission. Further, that the Building Commission hire additional,…

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