The Home Building Contracts Act 1991 (the HBC Act) provides protection for home owners and persons undertaking home building work.
Part 2 of the HBC Act applies to fixed price contracts for ‘home building work’ valued between $7,500 and $500,000.
Home building work includes:
- constructing a new dwelling;
- carrying out additions to an existing dwelling;
- placing a transportable dwelling on land, or
- carrying out any associated work in conjunction with a dwelling, ie. installing a swimming pool, cabinetry, erecting a garage, shed or pergola, or performing landscaping.
The main provisions include:
– A contract must be in writing, containing all the terms, conditions and provisions of the agreement and be dated and signed by both parties.
– A contract cannot provide for a payment that exceeds 6.5% of the total cost of the contract prior to the commencement of work. Once work has started, any progress payment must only be for work actually performed or materials already supplied.
– Any contract variation must be signed and dated by both parties, with a copy given to the owner before the variation work commences.
Further information about the requirements of the HBC Act is available from the Builders’ Registration Board