House of cards collapses on rogue builders

22 June 2018

A total of 122 criminal cases have been opened against home builders, who have contravened the Housing Consumers Protection Measures Act 95 of 1998 (HCPMA). The offences include carrying on the business of building homes without having registered and non-enrolment of homes, which is in contravention of the HCPMA.

HCPMA requires everyone in the business of building homes to register with the National Home Builders Registration Council (NHBRC), and that all new homes must be enrolled or registered with the NHBRC, 15 days prior to construction. NHBRC CEO Mziwonke Dlabantu said the NHBRC continues to forge relations with various stakeholders such as the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), South African Police Service (SAPS) and housing consumers to ensure understanding of the Act and successful prosecution of these matters.

“Our mandate as the housing watchdog requires us to take a stand against non-compliance with the act in order to protect housing consumers and to this extent, the NHBRC will continue to engage with relevant stakeholders to ensure compliance and enforcement of the act,” said Dlabantu. In addition, Dlabantu said the NHBRC has suspended 211 and prosecuted 506 home builders/contractors and/or developers, who transgressed the building regulations.

These include offences that relate to failure to rectify major structural defects, failure to rectify workmanship related defects, failure to enrol a home and contravening the code of conduct for home builders.  The provincial builder suspensions recorded include 70 in Gauteng, 66 in Western Cape, 29 in KwaZulu-Natal, 16 in Limpopo, 16 in Mpumalanga, five in North West, three in Eastern Cape, three in Free State and three in Northern Cape.

The NHBRC has the powers to suspend a registered home builder’s registration with the council or refuse to enrol such home builder’s homes for the period that it deems necessary to investigate the matter or until the registered home builder has complied with the relevant provisions of the act.

The act also empowers the NHBRC’s disciplinary committee, after following due process, to impose the withdrawal of registration of a home builder; a fine not exceeding R25 000 or a warning in instances where a home builder has been found guilty. 

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