The New Home Buyer Protection Act came into force in Alberta on February 1, 2014 and makes it mandatory for every new house or condo (commenced after February 1, 2014) to come with a third-party new home warranty program.
All builders must now be registered with a Registry set up under the Department of Municipal Affairs and the minimum warranties have been extended from what has traditionally been provided. The warranty is transferrable so it can be enforced by the original homebuyer and each subsequent buyer during the 10-year term of the warranty.
There are currently four (4) approved warranty providers: The Alberta New Home Warranty Program, National Home Warranty, Blanket Group of Companies, and Progressive Home Warranty.
The minimum warranties include:
1) One (1) year full warranty;
2) Two (2) year warranty on delivery and distribution systems (i.e. plumbing, heating, electrical);
3) Five (5) year warranty on building envelope; and
4) Ten (10) year warranty on structural elements.
When buying a new home or condo, buyers will now want to ensure that the builder is registered and in good standing with the Registrar.
Further when buying a home or condo built after February 1, 2014 (whether new or resale), buyers will now want to ensure that they are receiving an approved new home warranty program and will need to confirm the status of the warranty and the provider. Additionally, buyers of condos will need to obtain a Building Assessment Report which relates to the common property in the condominium building.
When selling a property built after February 1, 2014, sellers will be required to provide buyers with warranty disclosure information and will also have to provide a copy of the Building Assessment Report (for condos only). Thus, it will be important for buyers to ensure that they obtain these documents when purchasing a property, as they will need to produce them if they re-sell the property within the 10-year warranty period.
For further information, please see the website set up by the Alberta Government: http://homewarranty.alberta.ca/
At KH/Dunkley Law Group we are committed to staying up-to-date with the latest developments and legislation which impact our clients. We will take all required steps to ensure that our clients receive the benefits of the New Home Buyer Protection Act as this new development in residential real estate evolves.
For more information, please feel free to contact our office.
This memorandum is for informational purposes only, does not constitute legal advice or an opinion, and does not create a solicitor-client relationship. This is an overview and is not intended to be a complete and exhaustive explanation of the concepts covered. This information may become inaccurate based on passage of time or changes in the law. Nothing herein should be relied upon without seeking the advice of a lawyer.