WE ARE THE ONLY CONSUMER ORGANIZATION IN AUSTRALIA REPRESENTING THE INTERESTS OF ALL BUILDING CONSUMERS

house-second-headeraa1jpg-1Consumers who attempt to build, extend, renovate or do repairs are totally unprotected and we can prove that this has been the case for the last 23 years. Many independent inquiries have confirmed this fact, but no government will listen or act to stop what is essentially ‘legalized’ building fraud. Just read some of the stories of those whose lives have been ruined, Then come join us and be part of bringing about genuine change. 

True Story Videos

Faulty Tower: What a Lemon.

Bob the bad builder

Fatal Floors, Dangerous decks.

Slab Heave

Rogue Tradies

Lana`s house building disaster

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WILL YOUR BUILDING CONSULTANT ADVISE YOU TO BUY A LEMON?

We trust you have you read our previous 2 articles on Structural Elements not inspected by most Building Consultants revealing how pathetic most new home building inspections really are.

Here is a list of time-related defects most consultants do not even consider:-

- Heave / latent heave / inadequate flexibility of piping under
houses
- Future settlement and growing row of trees nearby
- Lack of compliance with roof truss design parameters /
inadequate truss bracing
- Differential movement - steel beams embedded in
unseasoned timber framing
- Future rot in balconies (various causes)
- Concrete cancer… poor cover to steel reinforcement
particularly near beaches
- Sarking used as flashing material and premature failure
- Inadequate upper cladding (re high winds)
- Roof tiles grossly under-fixed (re high winds)
- Rising general flood levels caused by continual reduction in
permeable soil
- Smeared silicone failure – bathrooms / incorrectly installed
gutter joints
- Corrosion by lead flashings
- Fraying electrical cables (apartments / commercial)

And then there are those dependent on extreme temperatures / mishaps:-

- Flammable external cladding (apartments / commercial)
- Water contained in roof top piping and storage – solar hot
water systems
- Glass about to explode (apartments / commercial) – waiting to
happen
- Inadequate soil report in volcanic loam soils (outer western
suburbs Melbourne)

VBAG keeping building consumers informed.
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GETTING THE MESSAGE TO PEOPLE ABOUT TO BUILD A NEW HOME.

PART ONE: THE OVERALL PICTURE

Amazingly the people most in need of advice on the VBAG site will probably never read one of our articles... even if they have a bad experience with their build. It seems like a conspiracy.

Perhaps it is because young couples are sick to death of being advised and told what to do by their loving parents. They want to do their thing… their way… by themselves. Seem like a teenager approach to things?

From blog sites and other forums, it seems that they will only listen to other new home owners building with the builders of their chosen dream homes at the prices stated by the sales staff… from the floor upwards.

The power of the display home lure, eh?

They certainly don’t want to be told what can go wrong… from direct experience.

We wonder therefore if they actually want to know what went wrong for others, because that will also be seen as an affront or attempt to ruin their dream.

We wonder if curiosity can somehow lead them to discover what to avoid. That's all VBAG really wants... and changes to the standards that bring back fairness.

They do seem to be bold though... if a little short-sighted. It might well come of seeing hundreds of apparently perfect looking new homes in new estates without hearing the stories behind those that are anything but perfect.

There's only the odd one shown on TV. And newspapers are a thing of the past for them. The technical age is well and truly upon them. And being young (or even elderly and downsizing) and pioneering, they may see themselves as invincible. Let's hope that they are not in the unfortunate group.

The biggest hurdle is their apparent mind-set that calamity won’t happen to them... so why be bothered with scary stories?

It also costs a little more at the beginning to be ultra careful... that's one cross against looking at the VBAG site.

Giving them a challenge they can't resist like a You Tube video that goes viral is one idea.

Another is a quiz?

Tell us what YOU think.

VBAG attempting to inform building consumers… before they build or extend.
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AN ADDITIONAL 17 EXPENSIVE LEMON-STATUS DEFECTS TO PONDER
(This list replaces 17 less expensive items from the former incidence report) Our apologies for the formatting over-ride.

• Inadequate allowance for existing or past row of trees (C)
• Inadequate footing depth due to superseded drawing used on site
• Renovated houses particleboard flooring far too close to ground
• Windows / glass inadequate due to incorrect wind speed factor chosen
• Single category under-rated bush-fire risk for property (*)
• Concrete slab out of level by 30 mm - 50 mm (*)
• The roof trusses will likely fail prematurely (bracing under / creep) (*)
• Stumps with inadequate footings and/or founding depth
• Party wall grossly inadequate between duplex homes
• Windows under-strength - waterfront / lakes / row houses(*)
• Cypress pine stumps not durable enough / concrete around stumps
• Slabs distorting (50 mm – 80 mm) way past maximum permitted (*)
• Roof trusses starting to fail by end of warranty (multiple inadequacies)
• Grossly inadequate durability of imported timber windows
• Treatment plant not installed (owner – builders) / sewer into stormwater
• Damp proof courses inadequate in brickwork (full renovation)
• Brick mortar well under in cement requirement / erosion (*)
The above list is additional to a previous list abbreviated to the following:-
25 EXPENSIVE LEMON STATUS DEFECTS in 0.1% incidence category
(These are 25 of 42 listed in a previous report)
• The slab is grossly deformed (>100 mm) causing repeated havoc with the entire building fabric requiring repeated repairs / uninhabitable (from2005) (*)
• Almost every trade has short-cut for full renovations combined with large additions projects plus major blunders such as no stump pads (*)
• Soil heave causing drainage failures under slab (*)
• Roof tile fixings less than 5% requirement (clips now required)
• House far too close to the ground in termite risk area
• Roof tile battens fixed to every second rafter
• Missing beams and posts (*)
• Soil slip filled embankment batters not founded to correct stratum (*)
• Soil slip embankment(s) too high (*)
• Soil slip area drainage grossly inadequate
• Inadequate repairs (or lack of roof protection after fire) causing mould
• Eco - stormwater not discharging to a main drain / flooding site (*)
• Bush fire rating grossly below requirement (*)
• Embedded steel beams amid wall and/or floor framing (to 2006) (*)
• Renovation pre-treatment to get rid of termites unsuccessful / damage
• Sarking perforation deterioration to tiled roofs under 17 degrees pitch (*)
• Two storey additions built on inadequate concrete slab
• Winding staircase mid-level treads (x3) 50mm too wide (S)
• Foam glue failure to particleboard floor on timber joists (*)
• Footing depth well under requirement due to un-stamped copy of original plan being used on site (*)
• Extended floor trusses (no engineering) grossly inadequate
• Inadequate in-situ made roof trusses
• Posts left out of bay window and windows carrying floor and roof
• Wall completely out past slab edge carrying considerable roof and floor loads via cantilevering wall plates and window sills
• House on slab set well below flood level (recently added)

The average defect price (to rectify) for the combined 2 lists of lemon status defects is more than… $24 000… PER DEFECT

VBAG keeping building consumers informed, because the governments, authorities and associations aren’t game to… because they have their priorities just plain WRONG.
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SCROLL DOWN down to May 20th 2017 for the prequel article to our just released August 13 article... The Average Cost of Defects in Out of Warranty New Homes is well over $25 000. ... See MoreSee Less

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Blog

Victoria’s building industry is failing consumers

September 3, 2016

Victoria’s building industry is failing consumers Fifth Estate 2 July 2015 Anne Paten, Victorian Building Action Group | 2 July 2015 The verdict on Victoria’s domestic building industry is in and on the public record. And it’s not pretty. The evidence of the Victorian Auditor-General’s Office Audit into Victoria’s Consumer Protection Framework for Building Construction … Read more

The Great Australian Dream: Spin, Lies and Fantasy

September 3, 2016

The Great Australian Dream: Spin, Lies and Fantasy 69 SHARED THIS Contributor: Anne Paten Published: 21 September 2015 Victoria’s ‘Great Australian Dream’ industry is supported and stimulated by spin, lies and fantasy. The building companies’ spin includes the ‘dream’ as a star fantasy feature. The standard slogans include ‘Build your Dream into Reality,’ ‘Create Your Dream … Read more

Consumer Protection Reform Strategy Fails. Dodgy shonky bad builders prevail.

September 3, 2016

Why the Consumer Protection Reform Strategy Fails and dodgy shonky bad builders prevail. By Anne Paten Sourceable 15 July 2015 LINK: https://sourceable.net/why-the-consumer-protection-reform-strategy-fails 88 people shared this article No 10 of Top 10 articles for July 2015 It is clear that the Domestic Building Consumer Protection Reform Strategy was created as a mirage, to give a … Read more

Was Australia’s Unaffordable Housing Crisis Avoidable?

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Was Australia’s Unaffordable Housing Crisis Avoidable? Over recent decades, the price of Australia’s housing stock has continued to soar. Now in 2016, we have reached a crisis point where, for so many Australian families, the dream of owning their own home is no longer achievable. However, Australia’s ‘unaffordable housing syndrome’ did not happen inadvertently or … Read more

What Lies Ahead in Construction: Leadership or More Licentiousness?

September 3, 2016

What Lies Ahead in Construction: Leadership or More Licentiousness? Published in Sourceable 31 August 2015 143 people shared this article By Anne Paten Link: https://sourceable.net/what-lies-ahead-leadership-or-more-licentiousness It is clear that we have a major crisis in the Victorian building industry. Hundreds of thousands of Victorians are living in limbo, casualties of a blatantly non-compliant and completely … Read more

The Truth Behind the ‘Consumer Protection Reform Strategy’

September 3, 2016

                        The Truth Behind the                        ‘Consumer Protection Reform Strategy’ Anne Paten in Sourceable 6 July 2015 109 shares 23 Comments https://sourceable.net/the-myth-and-reality-of-the-consumer-protection-reform-strategy/ After the damaging Auditor-General’s Report of 2011 and the Ombudsman’s Report of … Read more

Over the last fifteen years, there have more than one hundred (100) Inquiries into the building industry and its governance. These have included parliamentary inquiries and investigations by the Auditor-General, the Productivity Commission, the Ombudsman and other independent organizations. 

The Victorian building industry has suffered from systematic and systemic failure for decades. We now have overwhelming evidence to confirm that this ‘system’ has been malfunctioning for the last 22 years.

After decades of criticism of  the Building Commission’s failure as the ‘industry regulator’, and following damning Reports from the Victorian Auditor-General (2011 and 2013) and a scathing Report from the Victorian Ombudsman in 2012, the Government decided that the Building Commission’s record was so tarnished that it had to be abolished.