Report released: the rising number of building defects

Deakin University  and Griffith University researchers released a report into building defects this month, which coincided with the Mascot Towers defect disaster forcing apartment owners to leave their damaged apartments.

The unnamed report follows research into the types of defects and how they impact buildings and their occupants.

The research found that the number one problem in buildings was from water damage either caused by poor waterproofing or roof and rainwater disposal defects. The second and possibly more alarming find was from the number of defects relating to fire safety.

Researchers interviewed industry stakeholders, apartment owners and residents, including those who volunteered on owners corporation committees. They noted that “water penetration and fire protection defects were the most commonly cited problems.”

They also said that “the focus on minimum standards instead of best practice in the National Construction Code was also raised as a concern, as well as the private certification system, where community expectations were seen to be out of step with legal requirements.

“Many industry representatives suggested that human error played a significant part in building defects and the misuse of building products, lack of training, and lack of licensing were all common factors contributing the defect problems.”

With the latest apartment block defect issue making the news each night for over a week SCA (NSW) is watching closely. The Deakin University report confirms what most of the industry has been telling government for sometime and we will continue to raise this at every opportunity.