The day is finally here, on February 1 it becomes mandatory for new homes to have a warranty in Alberta. We discussed mandatory new home warranties on the blog last June and provided all the details we had at the time. The basic warranty details are as follows:
- 1 year labour and materials (fit and finish or cosmetics as it's commonly referred to)
- 2 year defect in labour and materials
- 5 year building envelope
- 10 year structural
- An online registry will list homes built from February 1st on, and will list the warranty provider and the time remaining on the warranty
Since 80% of new homes built in Alberta already come with a warranty of some kind, the biggest changes are really the registry, and the extension of the structural warranty to 10 years (most are currently only 5 years).
According to an article in the Edmonton Journal, the building industry, including contractors and renovators, has ranked in the top 10 for most complaints received by the Better Business Bureau of Edmonton for the past five years.
In 2013 alone, the bureau fielded more than 43,000 inquiries related to home builders and 168 complaints were filed. There were 14,689 new homes built in Edmonton during the same period. The majority of those complaints had to do with warranties, said Ron Mycholuk, spokesman for BBB Edmonton.
The Alberta Government has put together a pretty nice web site on the subject, where you can learn more about the program and see the registry. Home owners and those considering buying a home will be able to enter the address of the property into the registry to see who the warranty provider is for the home, and the length of time remaining on the warranty.
There are currently 5 warranty providers in Alberta, and there are big differences between the types of coverage offered. Interpreting these differences is something your REALTOR® can assist you with.