Thanks, that’s a relief. I don’t think I would trust one appointed by M.
This is where it's a little muddy, legally you have to have a Building Surveyor that is independent from the builder. This was legislation that was introduced. But volume builders 'force' you to use their preferred surveyor and sign over the legal right for them to manage that relationship. A legally appointed surveyor will handle things like building permits and such, but they are also meant to perform checks that many people pay an additional building surveyor/inspector to do.
Though with Metricon you can appoint your own fully independent surveyor, they'll no longer pay for the service or communicate with whoever you choose (even if it's the same company they prefer). You'll have to organize your own building permits, etc. So they defacto force you to use Checkpoint as your building surveyor. You would have signed that document if you're at the final stages of your contract.
Now the big issue is within the industry, is that most people aren't aware that the legally appointed independent surveyor is meant to do all the things others pay an additional service like "Darbecca" to do. But the VBA doesn't specify that level of detail in their legal requirements, the volume builders don't care and only want you to use a service that will have their best interest and the 'surveyor' industry doesn't care that you pay both Checkpoint and the likes of Darbecca to perform the same job. Everyone gets their money and you get to pay twice, or additionally.
So your current most likely scenario, is that you have filed out a form from Metricon called "Appointment of Building Surveyor" and consented for Metricon to act as your agent and deal with Checkpoint. Now checkpoint is meant to check to key inspections and check for building defects. Now this is where you are now forced to hire an additional inspector to check on the things Checkpoint are checking, as they are only legally need to check on 3-4 stages of the build and not to the level of any client wants. You'll also not get any direct reports or be consulted or informed when Checkpoint are performing any of the 'independent' activity on your behalf. I've had to fight to get tentative notice that I might get access to my reports when they check them.
The VBA needs to shift the rights back to the clients, and within the spirit of the law give the power back to the clients.
Oh and finally as they separate additional independent inspector isn't a legal requirement, Metricon isn't forced to deal with them and you'll need to chase them to ensure you're available for key check points. As they only have to have Checkpoint sigh off before they can proceed and start the timer on any required payment.
Rum_home, you sound like you are very knowledgable on the subject. We are building with another volume builder and have been invoiced for lock up stage. Although we have doors there are no locks/handles and a small wall has yet to be bricked. Would they have had to have sign off from there own inspector that the stage was complete before issuing invoice.
They are aware we have engaged darbecca to do the pre-plaster inspection and I have sent numerous emails asking for a date I can book in the pre pour inspection but they have not been forthcoming.