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Building & Construction Law

Building & Construction is a key industry sector in New Zealand. The sector is divided into two separate and distinct parts: Residential and Commercial

Standard Form Building Contracts

Standard form building contracts are made up of sections comprising General Conditions of Contract (standard clauses), Special Conditions of Contract (tailored provisions) and schedules. They come in a variety of forms.  The New Zealand Standard is generally considered the heavyweight in the Building & Construction industry and caters for everything from multi storied commercial complexes to standard residential housing. Consideration needs to be given to such issues as bond requirements, subcontractors, engineers input, indemnities, insurance risk, variations and extras, payments timing, guarantees and warranties and completion requirements.

Requirements for Residential Construction Contracts

The Building Amendment Act 2013 introduced consumer rights and remedies in relation to residential building work. The following is required for all residential building contracts over $30,000.00 in value:

  • Pre contract disclosure which includes a generic checklist and specific disclosure information;
  • Written contracts containing prescribed information including:
    • Basic facts about the parties and the work to be undertaken;
    • Pricing details;
    • Terms regarding delays and addressing defects;
    • Dispute resolution.
  • An automatic 12 months defects repair period;
  • Post contract disclosure.

Implied Warranties

The Building Act prescribes warranties to be implied into every residential building contract. They cannot be excluded and include:

  • The building work must be carried out in a proper and competent manner;
  • The building must be in accordance with the plans and specifications;
  • The work must be carried out in accordance with the building consent;
  • Materials used must be suitable for the purpose and must be new;
  • Work carried out must be in accordance with legal requirements;
  • Work must be carried out with reasonable care and skill;
  • The building work must be completed by the date specified or within a reasonable time (where no date is specified).

Our Experience

At Canterbury Legal several of our team members have expert  knowledge of Building & Construction Law, having been involved both in large and small scale residential and commercial developments. We also have extensive experience in operating within the Construction Contracts Act 2002, and assisting our clients to take advantage of the cash flow benefits in operating within that Act.

Chat With Us About Building & Construction Law

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Canterbury Legal Building
Level 2, Durham Street South
Christchurch Central 8011
Phone: +64 3 377 0792
Fax: +64 3 377 0795
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