There are some extremely important rules you have to follow when you’re building your own home.
Every builder has to follow them, but it’s crucial you understand how they could impact your build, so you don’t put your family or your investment in danger.
The first part of this series, How Australian Standards Affect Home Builders: Part One covered how the recent changes to the way you access the standards could affect you as a home builder. Part Two is all about your options as an owner and builder, and how you could avoid paying thousands on top of your existing building costs.
Did you see the recent news about imported glass shattering in Melbourne apartments? Read it here. It’s a reality check of how not building to code can affect you!
To recap the information in How Australian Standards Affect Home Builders: Part One, Australian Standards and Safety Codes fall in to two categories.
- The first is the Building Code of Australia, which can be accessed on the Australian Building Codes Board website. The BCA is a set list of technical requirements for any buildings or structures built throughout Australia. It’s reviewed and amended every year to allow for developments in the industry and it’s referred to in the Building Act of 1975.
- The standards, or reference documents as they’re also known, are documents that outline the rules, guidelines and detailed technical specifications for different building activities. There’s a standard for any building project you can think of; whether you’re looking for building material regulations, testing methods, installation of smoke detectors, drainage, plumbing or you’re waterproofing part of your home. If you can build it or install it, there’s a standard to follow.
When you build, the BCA and Australian Standards are the ‘rules’ you need to follow. If you don’t, your project could be unsafe, unsellable and uninsurable.
Whether your project is big or small, it needs to be built up to standard.
So, how will the standards impact your build?
It all depends on your situation.
Are you building your own home or hiring a company to do it for you?
Either way, you need to make sure your build is up to code and built to the Australian Standards throughout every stage.
How will you build your dream?
If you’re building with a building company:
Did you read Adam’s story in How Australian Standards Affect Home Builders: Part One? There’s no guarantee that your finished project will be up to scratch when you build with a construction company.
The scary part of handing your money over to another party is that you hand over control with it – and it can be painful trying to intervene if you suspect the work’s not the quality or standard it should be. Even more painful is looking for compensation or for the problem to be fixed once it’s all done.
To avoid potentially devastating problems, there’s some actions you can take for peace of mind:
- Only work with reputable companies
- Ask for the builder’s credentials and research previous work they’ve done
- Make sure everyone working on your home is qualified for the job they’re doing (their employer should be able to provide this)
- Ask to see the standard documents they’re following before they start work
- Pay attention to the process. If the builder seems unwilling to communicate with you or meet your requirements, reconsider!
Of course, the best way to avoid these issues altogether is to take control from the start and build your home yourself.
Check every stage to make sure it’s to standard.
If you’re building your own home:
Congratulations. You’ve made a decision that guarantees your work is up to code, safe and how you wanted it to look and feel.
Building your own home, with the right research and preparation, is an incredibly exciting and rewarding experience. There are hurdles that you wouldn’t need to worry about if you hired a building company to do it all for you, but owning and building is a skill you’ll be able to work on forever.
If you do choose to build your own home, making sure every stage follows the Australian Standards is vital, but there’s still the chance of huge costs since 2016’s failed negotiations with SAI Global.
So if you can’t borrow the standards from the library, and you can’t afford to buy them for every aspect of your build – what can you do?
Your most affordable option, with the best quality guarantee, is building with Home Together.
Our process has been designed so the owner is in the driver’s seat, with the experience of qualified builder supporting you.
- Our team will inspect every stage of your build to ensure it’s where it needs to be, and is up to code technically
- If there’s an issue, we’ll work through it with your chosen tradespeople or suppliers to make sure it’s been built according to the Australian standard
- Before you hire anyone to work on your home, we’ll look into their qualifications and experience to make sure they’re the best choice
- We make sure you have the necessary insurance in place before you start building, in case of the unlikely situation something goes wrong
When you choose to build with Home Together, you take control of your entire build, from design to slab to frame to lock up, and everything in between.
The BCA and Australian Standards documents have been designed so your home is safe.
Make where you hang your hat, a safe place to live. Image: Amber Interiors
Don’t try and avoid using them, just make the right choice when you build or renovate your home. You could hand all responsibility over to a building company, and hope that they keep their promise of quality, safety and functionality.
Or you could build with Home Together’s team of consultants and guarantee each stage of your build is to code, while experiencing the other benefits of building your own home.
We’re offering you a free consultation to discuss your building project with the Home Together team.
Click the button below to book a time!