Fire cladding audit - Land Valuers bulletin issue 28
19 March 2020
Fire events in Australia and around the world involving the use of certain types of external wall cladding highlight the need for land valuers to be aware of their obligations in relation to disclosures, as the presence or use of combustible cladding that does not comply with the Building Code of Australia has been found to contribute to the rapid fire spread across the façade of the building.
In Western Australia, the Department of Energy, Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety
(DMIRS) – Building and Energy Division (Building and Energy) recently completed a state-wide cladding audit of high risk buildings with combustible cladding. The audit resulted in 52 buildings with combustible cladding being referred to the relevant local government permit authority for enforcement action including the issuing of building orders. Building and Energy understands that each building owner issued with a building order under the Building Act 2011 is required to engage a fire engineer and remediate the combustible cladding.
Land valuers conducting a valuation on a building that has external wall cladding, should consider when preparing their valuation report whether or not the cladding is combustible and any remediation orders that have been issued.
This information may be available by contacting the builder, the relevant local government, the building surveyor who certified the building or the strata manager / real estate agent that might be managing the property.
Land valuers who have been engaged to provide services where there is no current contract of sale, may be unable to fully obtain information regarding what dangers a building’s cladding may pose. In this instance, land valuers should within their valuation report, provide a summary of what enquiries have been made and what information has been made available to them.
DMIRS - Consumer Protection Division understands that local governments have required the Council of Owners of a strata complex to formally notify the local government about any interim control measures recommended by fire engineers and to confirm that these measures have been implemented while options for remediation are being considered. Such measures include ensuring all occupiers of the building are fully informed about the risks and measures to manage them.
Further information about buildings impacted by the state-wide cladding audit can be obtained by contacting email@example.com or phone 1300 489 099.
The DMIRS publication Fire safety in existing apartment buildings includes some information which may be of interest to land valuers.
Reminder: Important legislative changes came into effect from 1 January 2020
Valuers are reminded of the recent amendments to the Land Valuers Licensing Act 1978 which were included in the Land Valuers bulletin issue #27.