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Licensed Building Practioner Scheme

01 May 2012, by harrisonlane in Blog

Most people will have heard of the Licensed Building Practitioner Scheme (LBP) but as with most legislation it may be hard for you to get a handle on what it means and understand its implications.

Below is a brief overview in layman’s terms which we hope helps.

The LBP scheme was introduced by the Government in November 2007 as part of the changes to the Building Act 2004. It is administered by the Department of Building and Housing (DBH) and the aim of the scheme is to encourage better building design and construction.

From 1st March 2012 only LBP’s may carry out or supervise certain types of building work – known as “restricted building work” – on homes and small to medium sized apartments. Restricted building work is work that is deemed to be critical to the integrity of the building, namely:

Design and construction that relates to the structure (load-bearing walls; foundations, etc)

Design and construction that relates to moisture penetration (roofs, cladding, etc)

Design of fire safety systems for small to medium sized apartments.

The scheme has seven licence classes:

  • Designers
  • Carpenters
  • External plasterers
  • Bricklayers and blocklayers
  • Foundation specialists
  • Roofers
  • Site (ie: on-site supervisors or managers)

From March 2012 it is an offence for an unlicensed person to carry out or supervise any restricted building work and it is an offence to knowingly engage an unlicensed person to carry out or supervise restricted building work.

Owner Builders

In March 2012 the Government passed a further amendment to the Building Act 2004 allowing Owner-Builders to carry out Restricted Building Work on their own home.

You are considered an Owner-Builder if you:

  • Live in or are going to live in the home (includes a bach or holiday home)
  • Carry out the Restricted Building Work to your own home yourself, or with the help of your unpaid friends and family members, and
  • Have not, under the Owner-Builder Exemption, carried out Restricted Building Work to any other home within the previous 3 years.

Building Warranties

The component products we use in constructing your building all have individual warranties, which of course vary depending on their use and what is specified by each manufacturer.

The Department of Building and Housing (DBH) web site states that all residential building work is covered by the implied warranties set out in the Building Act. These are basic protections for consumers and apply to all contracts for residential building work, whether written or verbal.

“In summary, the warranties require all building work to be fit for purpose, meet the requirements of the Building Code and be undertaken with reasonable care and skill.

People carrying out building work have an obligation to ‘put things right’ for up to 10 years, as long as there has not been misuse or negligent damage caused by the owner or occupier.

Some building contractors might offer guarantee products, which can provide additional assurance that any building defects will be put right. If you are thinking of purchasing a guarantee product, shop around and make sure you are aware of what you are getting, including the limitations and exclusions on cover.”

For more information on the LBP scheme please see the Department of Building and Housing web site at www.dbh.govt.nz

A full version of the Construction Contracts Act 2002 is available at http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2002/0046/latest/DLM163059.html

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