Building A New House
Dec 10, 2020 10:27 pm
Hi everyone, hoping to find out if this is normal....
In addition the the HIA agreement, we’ve been provided with a 40 page contract (annexure A) and a 27 page contract (general specs) that removes/changes clauses in the HIA agreement, and add brand new clauses that seem to indemnify the owner (ie me) to situations outside of their control, or ask the owner (ie me) to provide guarantees. For example, I need to ensure that water is connected and that the water pressure is a certain water pressure. Or, I’m to be held liable of the existing retaining walls haven’t been built correctly (it’s a house and land package and the developer set up the retaining walls). Or, if there’s damage to kerbs caused by the builder, the owner is liable. Does this seem reasonable/normal?
Has anyone had much luck getting these changed?
And, if we’re unable to agree on terms, what are the chances of getting our deposit back?
Thanks in advance!
Re: Building contract - unusual conditions favouring builder2
Dec 14, 2020 9:38 pm
I can not answer your question but our building contract was a standard HIA contract which had 50 pages; First 8 pages being cover, table of contents etc and last 42 pages were standard documents. One page of Schedule for special conditions by builder which were in addition/ changes to HIA contract. There were 5 special conditions altogether with one being COVID-19 related clause for extending build time. That was it. The technical specification document was seperate and it had 43 pages.
Re: Building contract - unusual conditions favouring builder3
Jan 05, 2021 1:29 am
Contractually it's pretty standard for them to seek an indemnity for things outside of their control - which in my view is fair. No one should be held liable for things outside of their control.
In my recently signed contract I too am held responsible for water pressure. I also think that it's fair that they should not be liable for retaining walls they did not build.
So, for example, if they build something and it cracks due to insufficient retaining walls, then you should have recourse to the person who built the retaining walls. The problem, of course, is that it might be difficult to prove fault (eg was the builder just a bad builder, which is why the wall cracked; or is it really the fault of the retaining walls).
This is exactly why some recommend getting the whole shooting match done by your builder - absolutely no questions then about who is at fault!
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