Owner-builder fined for not fixing Yanchep house

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An owner-builder has been fined after ignoring an order to fix defects in a Yanchep house. File picture

AN owner-builder has been ordered to pay $6000 in fines and costs after failing to fix several building issues affecting the new owners of a Yanchep house.

Jonathon Robert Reardon did not appear at Joondalup Magistrates Court on October 1 when he was convicted of breaching WA’s building laws by not complying with a building commissioner’s order.

The Building and Energy division at the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety said the court was told that in 2013 Mr Reardon received owner-builder approval and a building permit to construct the two-storey home, which was completed the following year and sold to new owners in 2016.

Owner-builders are responsible for their building work for seven years after the building permit is issued.

In 2017, the owner lodged a building services complaint with Building and Energy, which led to a building remedy order for Mr Reardon to rectify six defects at the house.

The issues included water ingress into three bedrooms and the balcony ceiling, inadequate weatherproofing of some doors, a loose and unsafe balustrade, missing gutter and downpipe sections, poorly applied rendering at wall sheeting joints and incorrectly positioned lights that could be hit by the garage door.

Mr Reardon failed to act on the order and a subsequent requirement for him to pay more than $32,000 to the owner, who is pursuing this payment but has since sold the house at a loss.

Building and Energy executive director Saj Abdoolakhan said Mr Reardon was previously ordered to pay more than $3200 in fines and costs last year because he had sold the Yanchep property without the required home indemnity insurance.

Mr Abdoolakhan said home indemnity insurance would have offered some protection to the new owner, who had affected impacted financially and emotionally by the defects and the lack of action to rectify them.

“It is unacceptable to simply ignore a building remedy order,’’ he said.

“The benefits of owner-builder approval also come with significant responsibilities and obligations, including supervision, project management and compliance with all relevant building standards.”