Consumer Protection Bill: Changes welcome but what about warranties?

1st Feb 16

Planning Institute of Australia has welcomed tabled changes to legislation aimed at better protecting consumers of domestic building work in Victoria, and improving discipline of building practitioners.

Extensive proposed changes to three key acts (Building Act, Domestic Building Contracts and VCAT) were tabled this week in the Victorian Parliament. The changes are aimed at improving protection from home building malpractice and making several other reforms to building-related legislation.

Changes include a streamlining of dispute resolution through the abolition of the Building Practitioners Board (BPB) with the board’s previous functions to be transferred to the Victorian Building Authority (VBA).

PIA Victorian President James Larmour-Reid says improving the domestic building system is systemic of a healthy planning system:

“PIA is pleased the state government is acting quickly on issues identified in the Victorian Auditor General Office’s report of May this year. Building practitioner and consumer confidence is an integral part of the performance of planning. Improving the building system, so the industry can get on with the business of compliant building, is a key indicator of a healthy planning system”.

Larmour-Reid states that public confidence will improve when much needed improvements are made to Domestic Building insurances:

“PIA understands that a vast majority of consumer complaints are triggered by issues with Domestic Building insurances. This week’s changes do not address needed changes to warranties, so we look forward to seeing these changes as part of the second roll-out of reform next year.” Concludes Larmour-Reid.

The Building Legislation Amendment (Consumer Protection) Bill 2015 was introduced this week into Parliament by Hon. Richard Wynne and Hon. Jane Garrett.

Planning Institute of Australia is Victoria’s peak body for the planning industry.

For interviews please call PIA Victorian President James Larmour-Reid on 0409 396 279 or PIA Victoria Executive Officer Carmel McCormack on 0402 249 832

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