One of the great advantages of buying a brand new home is a warranty. Purchasing a home is a significant investment, and you want to make sure it is well protected. As you look at homes and get to know the builders in your community, consider the warranty carefully.
New Home Warranty – Tarion
Is a new home warranty mandatory?
In British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec, builders have to provide homebuyers with a third-party warranty. In the rest of Canada, the decision is left up to the individual builder. For homebuyers, the choice is easy, you want to buy your home from a professional builder with a solid reputation, excellent after-sales service and a third-party warranty.
In Ontario – every new home must be registered with Tarion New Home Warranty. Also, every Builder must be licensed by Tarion New Home Warranty. This license is also subject to renewal annually.
Every New Home in Ontario is covered by a seven year Warranty. The seven year warranty covers major structural defects and begins on the date you take possession of the home and ends on the day before the seventh anniversary of that date. This warranty is covered by Tarion Warranty Corporation Direct. In addition to this warranty, there is a one year warranty and a two year warranty covered by the builder.
Ontario – The one year warranty is provided by your builder and it requires that the home be:
• Constructed in a workmanlike manner and free from defects in material;
• Fit for habitation;
• Constructed in accordance with the Ontario Building Code;
• Free of major structural defects.
The two year warranty is provided by your builder and covers:
• Water penetration through the basement or foundation walls;
• Defects in materials, including windows, doors and caulking, or defects in work that result in water penetration into the building envelope;
• Defects in work or materials in the electrical, plumbing and heating delivery and distribution systems;
• Defects in work or materials which result in the detachment, displacement or deterioration of exterior cladding (such as brickwork, aluminum or vinyl siding);
• Violations of the Ontario Building Code affecting health and safety (including, but not limited to, violations relating to fire safety and the structural adequacy of the home;
For more information about New Home Warranty (Ontario), please consult www.tarion.com and speak to your Builder.
Before you sign a contract with your builder:
Know what you are buying. Ask the builder to explain the warranty before you make a final decision-what’s covered and what’s not. Also verify that the builder is registered with a warranty provider; you can contact the provider by telephone or check their web site.
Before you move in:
As your home nears completion, your builder will schedule a walk-through of your home, also known as a pre-delivery inspection. Together, you and your builder will go through the home to verify that it is built according to plan, with the features and inclusions specified in your agreement. At the same time, you should take note of any imperfections and defects that require attention, down to the smallest detail-a sticking drawer, a missing towel rack, a scratch on the wall and so on. Discuss with your builder how and when these things will be dealt with.
During the walk-through, your builder will explain how to operate and service the mechanical systems, and how to take care of the many components in your home to ensure long-lasting performance. Ask questions as you go-it’s important that you feel confident and knowledgeable about your new home from the outset.
What if I run into a problem with my new home?
Keep in mind that “settling” is common during the first year and may result, for instance, in minor cracks or nail pops. If you have questions about your home, encounter any problems or need service, follow the process set out by your builder. In the event that your builder is not responsive to your needs, the warranty provider will ensure appropriate action, including mediation between you and your builder.
Expectations and responsibilities.
Open communication is key to avoiding conflict between you and your builder. What are the builder’s obligations and performance standards? What are the company’s after-sales service standards and process? What are you responsible for once you move in? What do you need to know in order to avoid problems in your new home? Don’t hesitate to ask your builder for answers to these and other questions. Warranty providers also offer detailed consumer information, including home maintenance, online or you can request written publications. Many also have excellent advice on home buying, such as what to look for in a builder and the steps involved in homeownership.
For more information on new home warranties please visit Tarion.com