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Residential Focus

29 January 2019

#Property & Real Estate

Christine Jones

Published by Christine Jones, Lauren Stables

Residential Focus

Deadline looms for registration of buildings with combustible cladding

New laws requiring building owners to register buildings with external combustible cladding start to bite on 22 February 2019, which is the first of the deadlines for owners to register buildings, for buildings which were occupied before 22 October 2018.

For more information about the Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment (Identification of Buildings with Combustible Cladding) Regulation 2018 (Regulation), please see our earlier edition, which can be viewed here.

The Regulation applies to the following building types:

  • buildings containing two or more sole-occupancy units each being a separate dwelling, such as residential apartment buildings (class 2 building in the Building Code Australia)
  • residential buildings, which is a common place of long term or transient living for a number of unrelated persons, such as hotels and boarding houses (class 3 building in the Building Code Australia)
  • health care buildings, including those parts of the building set aside as laboratories and any associated single dwellings within the building (class 4 and 9a of the Building Code Australia)
  • assembly buildings, including a trade workshop, laboratory or the like, in a primary or secondary school and any associated single dwellings within the building (class 4 and 9b of the Building Code Australia)
  • aged care buildings and any associated single dwellings within the building (class 4 and 9c of the Building Code Australia).

Owners of such buildings which are two or more storeys should act now to register their building through the NSW Cladding Registration portal if the building has:

  • any cladding or cladding system comprising metal composite panels, including aluminium, zinc and copper, that is applied to any of the building's external walls or to any other external area of the building
  • any insulated cladding system, including a system comprising polystyrene, polyurethane or polyisocyanurate, that is applied to any of the building's external walls or to any other external area of the building.

Owners of buildings occupied after 22 October 2018 will be required to register their building within four months of the building first being occupied. 

The penalty for non-compliance is $1,500 for an individual and $3,000 for corporations.

Editorial: Christine Jones & Lauren Stables

In the media

MBA: 2019 a challenging year for residential building says latest forecast
New home building across Australia is facing into its toughest year in almost a decade with declining house prices and the fallout from the Royal Commission really starting to bite (24 January 2019).  More...

RICS: Update to members on Opal Tower
Following reports of major cracks appearing in Sydney’s newly built Opal Tower, there has been a steady stream of public commentary around potential root causes and mitigations. Reporting has spread throughout the world and the Australian building and construction industry is now the subject of discussion with respect to standards, regulation and compliance (21 January 2019).  More...

MBA: First Home Buyers loans up but investors decline
Housing finance figures for November contained good news for the First Home Buyer (FHB) segment of the market, with their share of owner occupier home loans rising to 18.3 per cent which was the highest monthly result since October 2012 (21 January 2019).  More...

MBA: Building activity still at relatively high levels
Despite the challenges faced over the course of 2018, ABS figures for the September 2018 quarter indicate that building activity was still at a relatively high level. Interestingly, the latest figures show that the immediate pipeline of work in residential building was very large (16 January 2019).  More...

'Safety lower than required': What the Opal Tower report actually says
The Opal Tower interim report, written by some of the state's most senior independent engineers after a more than two weeks of investigation, went some way in giving residents answers as to what went wrong (16 January 2019).  More... 

New South Wales

AIBS: NSW Government exploits plight of Opal Tower residents for political purposes
Minister Kean’s attacks on building surveyors, or certifiers as they are known in NSW, will do nothing whatsoever to help affected residents who have been forced from their homes, nor facilitate a faster result of the investigation now underway into the cause of cracks in a pre-cast concrete panel in the building (21 January 2019).  More...  

Opal Tower: Design and construction issues uncovered
The NSW Government has released the preliminary findings of an interim report produced by independent engineers investigating structural issues in Opal Tower. While the engineers have declared the building “structurally sound and not in danger of collapse”, they identified a number of issues that will require “significant rectification works” (15 January 2019).  More...

In practice and courts

AIBS: What to expect in NCC 2019
The ABCB recently published the January edition of Connect which provides details of what to expect in NCC 2019. An article written by AIBS National Technical Manager Jeremy Turner explaining the crucial role of the building surveyor and how this profession is keeping up-to-date with this ever changing industry is also included (14 January 2019).  More... 

New South Wales

Combustible Cladding Registration due 22 February 2019
Under the new Regulations, owners of certain buildings with external combustible cladding are required to register their building with the NSW Government through the Cladding Registration portal. The  deadline for registration is 22 February 2019. Owners of new buildings will be required to register their building within four months of the building first being occupied.  More...

New dates for Environmental Planning & Assessment Act updates
Councils, certifiers and other industry practitioners have more time to implement some of the recent EP&A Act updates. Changes affect new provisions for building and subdivision certification, Local Strategic Planning Statements for councils in the Greater Sydney Region and Community Participation Plans. While most of the changes will commence on 1 March 2018, there will be a number of other changes that will involve further design and consultation.


Harrison v Riley [2019] NSWCATAP 31
(1) Leave to appeal is refused.
(2) The Appeal is dismissed.
APPEAL – Parties to contract – whether error in conclusion that work not undertaken with due care and skill – evidence.
Defective building work.
Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2013; Civil and Administrative Tribunal Rules 2014; Corporations Act 2001 (Cth). 

Dassouki v Department of Fair Trading [2019] NSWCATOD 14
(1) The decision under review is varied by shortening the period of disqualification from 12 months to 6 months.
(2) This decision will take effect after the expiration of 28 days from the date of the decision.
LICENSING – Disciplinary action against holder of contractor licence – improper conduct – fit and proper person – officer of company found to have contravened legislation – appropriate disciplinary action.
Administrative Decisions Review Act 1997 (NSW); Crimes Act 1900 (NSW); Home Building Act 1989 (NSW).


New South Wales

Proclamations commencing Acts
Protection of the Environment Operations Amendment (Asbestos Waste) Act 2018 No 80 (2019-18) — published LW 25 January 2019

Christine Jones, Partner - Construction & Infrastructure (Dispute Resolution) 
T: +61 2 8083 0477 

Divya Chaddha, Associate 
T: +61 2 8083 0457

The information in this publication is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, we do not guarantee that the information in this newsletter is accurate at the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future.

Christine Jones

Published by Christine Jones, Lauren Stables

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