The province is introducing a new bill which would license all home builders in Alberta.
On Thursday, Bill 12, the New Home Buyer Protection Amendment Act, was heard for the first time in the Alberta legislature.
If passed, builders would need to release information regarding past infractions such as safety, code, and fraud issues before getting their license. They would also have to prove they’re in good financial state and are knowledgeable in constructing homes.
“What this is really to do is to try and stop the fly-by-nighters that are coming in and having a numbered company, not accountable for themselves, don’t really have any history and are leaving the consumers high and dry,” said Shaye Anderson, Minister of Municipal Affairs.
In 2016, a pilot project was launched in Fort McMurray. Construction crews needed to complete a declaration through the New Home Buyers Registry before applying for a builder’s permits.
Information gathered was posted online for residents to view.
“It talked a little bit about their history so the consumers had an informed decision for when they were choosing who their builder was,” added Anderson.
Canadian Home Builders’ Association says their members have been providing warranty coverage for more than 40 years. Anderson tells Mix News the warranty system is only helpful after a problem arises.
“What we’re trying to do is really mitigate issues coming up and help ID the good builders that are out there so we make sure those guys are getting recognized for what they’re doing.”
Right now, Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec and soon to be Manitoba builders already need licenses to work.
Anderson notes if the bill is approved, they are looking at starting the process around this fall, preparing for next year’s construction season.
“People are making the biggest purchase of their lives and we need to make sure that they have somebody they can trust and it won’t interrupt the work underway.”