Perth home owners targeted by unregistered painters

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The Building Commissioner is reminding consumers to check a painter’s registration before engaging them to carry out painting work valued over $1,000 or risk being ripped off.

The Building Commission is continuing to receive information that unregistered painters may be distributing flyers and going door-to-door offering roof painting and other maintenance services, with the latest reports this week coming from home owners in the Willetton and Sorrento areas. Home owners outside the metropolitan area should also remain vigilant, with previous warnings having included some areas in regional WA.

Building Commissioner Peter Gow said a brush with these dodgy traders, many of whom are itinerant travellers, could leave consumers with a sub-standard and overpriced result.

“In most parts of Western Australia, carrying out painting work valued over $1,000 requires a registration and any advertisements offering major painting work should contain the painter’s registration number,” Mr Gow said.

“The Building Commission and our colleagues at Consumer Protection receive frequent complaints from consumers who have handed over money to an unregistered painter only to be left with overpriced and substandard work – or in some cases, no work at all. 

“The best way for consumers to protect themselves from dodgy painters is to ask to see their accreditation and independently verify it before agreeing to any major work on their property.

“You can check a painter is registered on the Building Commission website at”

The Commissioner said advertisements that used headings like “full roof painted” for a value over $1,000 or which gave a 1800 phone number or did not contain a trading name were signs a painter may be operating illegally and consumers should check their credentials before agreeing to any work. He said consumers should also be wary of painting services offered door-to-door.

“These unregistered traders are difficult to track down for a refund or to make a warranty claim if you’re not satisfied with the work and are breaking consumer law by not observing a 10-day cooling off period for unsolicited sales,” Mr Gow said.

“Most building work valued over $20,000 also requires the builder to be registered in WA and all plumbing work must be carried out by a licensed plumbing contractor.”

Anyone who comes into contact with traders offering unauthorised work should be reported to the Building Commission on 1300 48 90 99 or email


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Building and Energy
Media release
13 Jan 2015

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