As pretty much everyone in New Zealand knows, houses in Auckland have been popping up left, right and center. Everywhere you turn, you will see construction, builds and new homes all around. Every building and renovation company is swamped with work and struggling to keep up.
The housing crisis can be attributed to a number of factors, including very large numbers of immigrants coming to New Zealand in recent years. Builders have been doing everything they can to keep up with demand, but the demand keeps increasing. The government has announced plans to build 34,000 more homes in Auckland over the next 10 years to try to keep up with demand.
What are some risks and issues this causes?
This kind of demand and shortage creates a lot of surrounding issues such as very high pricing, both for houses and services such as building, lower quality of the work, due to them rushing to meet more demand and underqualified and unqualified workers being hired as there are just not enough qualified workers to do all the work. Many people are cross qualifying to make more money. Where there is a market there is business and as per the numbers above you can see that the building industry offers a lot of opportunity to many that want to earn more money. However, the negative side of this is that some individuals are less qualified and experienced and tend to charge the same amount as the experienced and qualified ones, while providing work that is not to the same level.
What can you do to avoid these risks?
There are several steps you can take to ensure that you get a qualified builder on your project. Using due diligence will ensure that you select a builder that you can trust and who will do a quality job.
When choosing a builder, we recommend you check these following points:
- Get quotes from more than one to company for the job so you can see if the pricing is fair and realistic.
- Don’t automatically go with the cheapest just because it’s the cheapest. Get the more expensive ones to justify their costs and make comparisons so make sure you are getting good value for money. And don’t forget, you often get what you pay for.
- Have a look at other projects that the builders have done, and ideally speak to their previous customers to get a good idea of what the service was like. Online reviews can also be worth gold.
- Check if they are registered with either the Master Builders Association or NZ Certified Builders. These two are the two main industry organisations for builders, but builders do not have to register and there are many excellent builders who do not belong to either organisation.
- Group House companies can a good option, providing standard designs and some will do custom-designed homes. They will take care of the whole project for you from start to finish, including project management.
- Make sure any arrangement you have with your builder is fully spelt out in the building contract. This is protection for both parties.
You are also covered by various acts, which includes the following:
Construction Contracts Act – This act ensures protection of retention money withheld under construction contracts, a fair, balanced and appropriate payment regime, access to fast and cost-effective dispute resolution and cost-effective and timely enforcement of rights and obligations.
Consumer Guarantees Act – This act covers all goods and services ordinarily purchased for personal, domestic or household use. Goods include pretty much everything in and around the home, from appliances to vehicles, furniture to food. Electricity, Gas, water and computer software are also covered.
Fair Trading Act – This act promotes accurate consumer information before you buy products and services, and product safety, amongst other purposes. What a business says about its products or services in advertising or tells you is important for consumer protection.
Tort law – A tort, in common law jurisdictions, is a civil wrong that has caused someone else to suffer a loss or harm which results in legal liability for the person who commited the tortious act.
We at Renovations NZ are fully qualified and registered builders in New Zealand who can do the building work you need. Talk to us today about the building work you need done and let us build your dream home!