Contract for deck work amounts to fine

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Middle Swan man Matthew John Paterson, trading as Pato’s Patios, has been successfully prosecuted by the Building Commissioner for offences he committed in contracting for home building work at a Yangebup property in 2014.

The Fremantle Magistrates Court ordered Mr Paterson to pay a $2,000 fine, costs of $714.96 and $3,915 in compensation to the property’s owner after finding him guilty in his absence of two charges under the Home Building Contracts Act 1991.

The court found Mr Paterson had failed to ensure the home building work contract was signed by both parties; and had entered into a contract that provided for him to receive a deposit in excess of 6.5 per cent of the total value of the work (approximately 20 per cent of the total amount payable).

Valued at $9,000, the home building work contract was for the supply and installation of a timber deck.

Despite the owner having paid Mr Paterson a total of $4,500 for a deposit and purchase of materials, no work was performed or materials delivered under the contract.

Building Commissioner Peter Gow said, “Contracts for home building and associated work valued between $7,500 and $500,000 must meet the minimum requirements set out in the Home Building Contracts Act.

“Builders and home owners should familiarise themselves with their rights and responsibilities before they enter into a home building work contract.

“Paying a deposit in excess of 6.5 per cent for home building work is one of the critical mistakes that can expose consumers to financial loss.

“The ‘Building or renovating your home’ section of the Building Commission website contains helpful information for consumers, or phone us on 1300 489 099.

“The Building Commission will continue to hold to account and name those who put the public interest and the reputation of the building industry at risk.”

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Media release
18 Jan 2017

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