Local governments in B.C. that regulate construction have a high degree of individual autonomy. They can mandate that permits be obtained for work regulated by their building bylaws and inspections be carried out. But they are not required to complete the permit process or issue reports to homeowners and homebuyers on the status of issued permits. This results in a lack of critical information that can expose homebuyers to the kind of horror stories Selena Robinson has heard and spoken about publicly.
But homebuyers can’t count on the governments to protect the most valuable investment most will ever make. There is nothing to prevent the listing and sale of homes with incomplete/unaccepted inspections or inform homebuyers of the status of building permits.
The lack of provincial oversight of the requirements of the building bylaws and inspection activities of local governments exposes homebuyers to potential construction defects that may not make themselves known for decades.
The elected officials of local governments have chosen to regulate construction by-law in the public interest for reasons of health, safety and the protection of persons or property, not in the interest of builders or sales agents.
Until homebuyers are provided with the information they need to make an informed decision, no amount of cooling off will address this issue.
David MacPhail, Maple Ridge
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