But Icon Co is now facing an order of its own with the Office of the Building Commissioner deeming it also responsible, as it purchased the apartment’s builder, Icon Constructions Australia, and shared its directors for the last five years.
ATLAS CAPITAL & EQUITIES, the developer of the building on Condamine Street in Manly Vale, was handed orders on Monday to rectify defects in the complex’s waterproofing and car-stacking system.
– issued a prohibition order that prevents it from settling with buyers of off-the-plan apartments
– Inspectors found that serious defects could arise from waterproofing of balconies and the installation of a system that stacks cars
-and determined that a lack of safety measures for the stacker could result in serious injuries
From a Commentator:
‘NEVER, no matter what the inducement, buy an apartment off the plan. Wait until construction is completed and an occupation certificate has been issued, and get a defect inspection done as well. It’s a small cost compared to the potential disaster if defects are cleverly concealed.’
FOLLOWING the disasters of the Opal Tower and Mascot Towers and others … apart from the appointment of a NSW Building Commissioner, CAAN did a search to find out whether the legislation had been introduced in NSW requiring builders and designers to be registered. This is what we found among the reports:
1 July 2020:
The Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020 comes into effect – but is it designed right?
The Sydney Eastern City Planning Panel knocked back the redevelopment proposal for 40-76 William Street by Anprisa Pty Ltd, associated with Edward Doueihi, founder and director of Ceerose.
DESPITE the panel’s rejection, managing director Edward Doueihi confirmed that the company intends to progress the existing design for the project through the Land & Environment Court process. (AKA the Developers Court.)
THE NSW Building Commissioner will be able to issue stop work orders, order developers to rectify defective buildings and stop occupation certificates from being issued.
With three goals …
-the first to focus on the accreditation regime for designers
-the second to give insurers the confidence to ensure the work
-the third decennial liability insurance with 10 years coverage for defects for consumers
The new legislation has been described as complicated however, when companies contravene the legislation the directors and any involved in company management can be personally liable! This may also be retrospective!
IT would seem due to community-wide awareness of the shoddy work of this Sector … with the word having gotten around … across the Globe … and the consequent pull-back that the TaskForce had to concede somewhat … and it could be this is as far as they have let the Commissioner get to …
THIS Report in the SMH sounds good with the new NSW Building Commissioner, David Chandler having the power from 1 September 2020 to enter and inspect building sites, to prevent the issue of ‘occupation certificates’, and order work to be stopped!
However distraught home buyers/owners (*Constituents) have more to say about the system being stacked against them!!
A summary of their comments …
-the building commissioner should look at the ongoing issue of insurers fighting claims with the aim of wearing down claimants; the ongoing legal costs were going to exceed any forecast insurance payout; the payout has barely covered 50% of the real costs of remediation.
-deregulation and self regulation simply doesn’t work; Regulations exist for a reason
-the only real fix is to have truly independent supervising professional inspectors signing off at every stage of construction
-the introduction of self-certification by builders with final sign off by someone paid by the builder has always been dodgy.
-the use of substandard materials, bad building practices, mistakes and shortcuts have long been concealed by the time of final certification
-the buying off the plan system needs to be banned because the developers/builders can have millions in their pockets before they pick up a shovel and there is a wish to spend as little as possible of it on actual construction.
-will the shonky developers, builders and certifiers be named? Future buyers need to know whose work to avoid
-the old Home Owner Warranty scheme should be applied to apartments; for the builder/developer to have enough money set aside for 5 years to cover defects
-nowadays they make huge profits shuffled to shelf companies and they are liable for nothing
-when a builder/developer goes broke they lose everything except their money
-is the ‘tough talk’ a NSW INC PR campaign to allow the industry to continue to build sub-par work at high profits (a 2-bed apartment costs $200,000 to build)
-will the list of dodgy developers/builders/certifiers be released publicly? Will on-going transparency reports be publicly made available?
-councils should be the only organisation to nominate certifiers
-what will happen when developers withdraw their political donations?
-could this NSW INC exercise be about restoring public interest in buying apartments?
-looks like it is about protecting the construction industry and investors rather than protecting home buyers from defective development
-when will criminal charges and gaol terms be imposed?
-why isn’t the government taken to task for privatising certification?
-now we have red tape + building defects + bankrupted home owners
CITY OF SYDNEY Homeowners are being hit with $25,000 bills to remove and replace combustible cladding
WHY are home owners in this predicament?
Wasn’t there a NSW Parliamentary Inquiry held into the regulation of building standards, and building quality?
Yes! The reforms were designed to give homeowners who buy defective apartments an easier path to pursue damages. A registration system and developers to be forced to comply with ‘declared’ building designs.
YET … the homeowner victims are being hit with the rectification bills?
DESPITE the final report to the NSW Government making a range of recommendations for flammable cladding including:
The need to disclose to potential buyers or renters when a building contains flammable cladding. .
That the NSW Government provide substantial funding for the rectification of buildings containing aluminium composite panels, and that these products be banned from the Australian market. .
That the funding the NSW Government provide for flammable cladding be proportionate to that of the Victorian Government’s $600 million. .
In circumstances where insurance has not provided a suitable solution to the flammable cladding issue, the NSW Government should take it upon itself to pay for the rectification of flammable cladding.
READ MORE from ‘NSW Parliament Report on Defects Crisis’
YET despite all of this … it is incredulous, isn’t it, that the perpetrators … those that own the housing development projects … continue, it seems, to get off ‘Scott free’?
… and NSW INC has now released a Second and Third Tranche of more Overdevelopment … and the Medium-Density Housing Code is to come into effect on 1 July 2020!!
Further this report, ‘It’s not fair: Sydney cladding crisis threatens to ‘crush families’ financially‘ reveals that NSW INC, it appears, due to decades of deregulation, have dodged a bullet because the new recommendations, it appears, are not retrospective!
The issues at this site are not the Certifiers doing, they are the dodgy builder and his dodgy sub contractors doings. Being under investigation does not mean being guilty.
When is the Government going to focus on the developer/builder instead of over regulating the regulator?
Certifiers can get fines of up to 200K and be tarnished through the media whilst these inept developer/builders continually get away with the same ‘shit’, and aren’t subject to fines or reprimands.
CAAN: We wrote in the text to our intro: ‘Was Mr Storer employed by the developer, and if so, did the developer exert pressure upon the Certifier to issue the occupation certificate?
Following which Merhis was able to get customers who had bought apartments off the plan to settle!
In which case it would seem the developer ought be under investigation!’
Steven: It’s not so much a matter of whether the developers exert pressure on Certifiers or not because most times Certifiers don’t even deal with the developer directly and more so deal with the principle contractor/builder.
The big issue is unskilled labour and poor workmanship by tradies and builders working to stupid time frames and not quality controlling their trades.
It’s not the Certifiers role to ensure quality control and we get wrapped into these messes because certain tradies and builders don’t give an F!
You can do an online course and be a builder or PM in 12 months!
You don’t need a licence or any qualification to install fire doors, fire seals, build fire walls, fire rate floors, columns etc, etc
But yet there is an expectation that Certifiers should be responsible for these imb.ciles and their lack of knowledge. We are constantly fighting with tradies regarding these issues (which is not our role).
For your info, to be an A1 Certifier you need a minimum of 6 years study and 8-10 years in the industry.
Our minimum PI insurance policies are circa 200+ pa.
On the flip side, to install a fire door to your apartment, the tradie needs a chisel, a drill, a tool bag, no licence, qualifications or insurance!
Why and how do we have a system where this is permissible?
Why is it that this Certifier is likely to now get fined for poor workmanship by tradies and the builder? Yet the tradies probably won’t even know about it, and be currently installing the same shit on the next apartment.
You want to fix the problem, start fining and reprimanding builders and tradies for unskilled and poor workmanship, and watch the quality of work surprisingly increase!
NSW is going to be left with no Certifiers willing to work in residential apartments very soon. Already 70% of Certifiers refuse to touch it, and in that 70% sits the top end of town.
This Certifier is being tarnished because the SMH just like every other news outlet thrives on shock media. Why don’t they focus on the builder and his tradies?