Apartments are getting popular in Auckland again. A few current projects include Queens Square, Princes Residences, Victoria Residences and the Sugar Tree Apartments Project.
It is interesting to note a lot of these projects are based on the floor plans. Buyers sign a binding contract and pay down a deposit well before the apartments are built. Buyers place high confidence on the developer to complete the building on time and to a high standard, hopefully free of weather-tightness issues.
How is this relevant to the Code Compliance Certificate?
Councils issue a Code Compliance Certificate for all building work which meets all the conditions of the building consent. Basically, it is an implicit guarantee that the building work is of a high quality and is issued after an inspector has completed a final inspection of the work. In almost all cases, you can take the council’s word for it but the article about the Kensington Park development reminds us that sometimes even the Councils get it wrong.
Well, it’s not the first time. The Council had issued a Code Compliance Certificate for the Nautilus Apartments. However, it was later found to be a leaky building. In 2015, the owners of the Nautilus apartment won a $25 million settlement against the Council, the developer and the architect.
What we learn from all this is that buying new developments can sometimes be like buying a new car. Sometimes there are hidden defects which you won’t notice until many years of ownership. For cars, you’ll notice maybe after a few months but for houses, problems can go unnoticed for years. For this reason, if you bought a new home that was built recently, it’s always a good idea to take a closer look at the walls and ceiling after a major storm or rainfall. Look for any signs of cracks on the exterior wall. If you have concerns, and would like to find more information check out the Weathertight Homes Resolution Service.