This could be the end for owner builders in NZ.
“How these changes affect you. New legislation came into effect 1 March 2012 which introduced the concept of restricted building work.
If residential building work is structural and/or affects the weathertightness of the building, then it may be restricted building work. This means you must employ a Licenced Building Practitioner (LBP) to design and undertake that work. An LBP must either do the work themselves or be supervised by somebody who is a registered LBP.
– External Plasterers
– Brick and Blocklayers
– Foundation specialists
Professional Engineers, Architects, Plumbers and Gasfitters are treated as Licensed Building Practitioners and can carry out some restricted building work.
These changes apply from now.”
Anonymous: “I refer to this as profit by legislation. The big building and building supply companies can’t let you build your own as they don’t make money. They have the money and influence. They don’t want to stop you just get their cut.
There are many reasons for it. Part of it was seeds planted by the previous labor government to protect union workers. Another is NZ had a major building disaster where homes that were built that leaked water years later. This was due a lot to get rich quick builders during a building boom. Owner/builders built to last and didn’t make the same mistakes but are paying for the cheap practices of profiteers.”
Owen: That’s terrible news. I’ve always believed people have the right to build their own home without excessive government interference. It’s a basic human right. These new rules (only in New Zealand at this time as far as we know) remind me of my blog post the other day about Building Codes are a Slippery Slope. Codes do have certain advantages, especially in highly populated areas and for commercial structures such as schools. But when society starts adopting codes for all buildings, it’s an open invitation for runaway government regulation, control and corruption. For instance, your project might get turned down while someone else who pays a bribe gets their project accepted. Every tradesman will be put through the wringer with endless training and certification programs – all at worker’s expensive of course. And obviously this will drive up the cost of construction considerably. In the end, few will gain at the expense of many.
This system will pretty much kill affordable housing. The only way to build affordable housing to code using professionals is building tiny crackerbox apartments on a large scale such as ‘Projects’ (ghetto housing). We’ve already seen how these types of housing units fail and contribute to social breakdown. That’s why the US government has been tearing them down for the last 10-20 years in inner cities.
And this system will eventually kill natural building, as well as stifle creativity and experimentation. Gone will be the innovative homebuilder who builds his own zero energy earth sheltered home out of local materials. And it will cause untold cultural problems for those who have been living in earthen houses and bamboo houses for countless years. Maybe that’s part of the nefarious plan – drive poor people off their land in villages to work in sweatshops in urban areas where it’s easier to control them and tax them to death.
I haven’t heard of this new restrictive building code spreading elsewhere. It would be a very sad day if it does. New Zealanders: vote all the bums out of office before it’s too late.