The Next Frontier of Construction Confidence – SCA (NSW), DAVID CHANDLER AND THE OBC

Strata Community Association (NSW) and the Office of the Building Commissioner have been working closely on government projects to help foster and re-establish consumer confidence for the building/construction industry in New South Wales.

We’re delighted to be recognised by the OBC and NSW Government as a key stakeholder and source for expert commentary on high rise living and the issues people in buildings riddled with defects have been facing.

We intend to champion the significant achievements to our industry and forge a new era for Strata by forming our own Professional Standards Scheme. A decision which synergises with Government expectations and innovation necessary within our sector.

We’re aiming to professionalise the Strata Management industry to the highest level. This is in line with the New South Wales Government plan to rebuild the construction sector, restore confidence and enshrine competence, professionalism, and a form of self-regulation within the industry.

As our advocacy for better construction standards continues across the state, we are excited to continue our strong relationship with David Chandler and the OBC, and to introduce joint initiatives which are critical to restoring consumer confidence and influencing the strata agenda in NSW.

The construction reforms that the NSW Government have introduced this year and David Chandler’s regulatory muscle push NSW into beefing up-regulation of an industry notorious for past failings.

This is a huge step forward and redefining crossroad for strata and the construction industry!

David Chandler’s new powers are in full swing and we’re excited as the industry is set to shift, bettering consumers state-wide.

The NSW building regulator now has powers to withhold occupation certificates for apartment and other buildings that are not up to standard, denying developers the ability to settle their projects. David Chandler and the Office of the Building Commissioner, along with the investigative and enforcement squad of officers and staff will send a clear message to builders in NSW thinking about taking a single shortcut.

The ability of a regulator to prevent settlement (the point of profit for developers), is unprecedented and beckons a major change in Australia’s commercial development industry.

These powers will also work towards ensuring there’s a crackdown on sub-standard building materials, such as flammable cladding, asbestos products and cheap imported electrical wiring, all of which remained problematic in the building sector.

As part of meeting Government expectations, SCA (NSW) have sought a defined and measurable improvement in consumer confidence and have called on the Office of the Building Commissioner to deliver a 50% increase in consumer confidence by 2025!

Chris Duggan, SCA (NSW) State President, has met with Commissioner Chandler and discussed the value of stakeholder engagement, their commitment to increasing consumer confidence and to discuss a survey collaboration between both parties.

As a background to the survey:

1. Poor quality buildings have been a significant problem in New South Wales. The full extent of this problem and the prevalence of material and other defects in Class 2 multiunit residential buildings in NSW is not fully known.

2. The Office of the Building Commissioner (OBC) is aiming to conduct a survey that collects quantitative data relating to building quality and defect materiality.

3. The OBC believes that collaboration with Strata Community Association (NSW) is the best way to deliver results.

The survey has been introduced to members, and research is underway as part of the collaboration between SCA (NSW) and the OBC.

This is critically important as it will deliver results on 6,000 buildings constructed over the last 6 years and 750 new buildings every year thereafter. The survey aims to dive into the granularity of defects, reviewing:

• Waterproofing 

 • Structural

• Cladding 

 • Fire

To deliver a complete picture across a large dataset. The data will be used to understand consumer experiences with defects.

We have high expectations of success for the OBC and we’re confident we will soon start to see positive and measurable differences in consumer confidence and purchasing experience.

We thank David for his ongoing support, expertise, and trust as we tackle defects across NSW.

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