Call Us Today! 0413 824 804|

Who is an Owner-Builder?

/Who is an Owner-Builder?
Who is an Owner-Builder? 2017-10-03T03:52:16+00:00

Who is an Owner-Builder?

Under the Building Act, an owner-builder is the person registered on a property title who carries out building works on that property. Regulations for residential building projects or renovations require that a building permit is issued to the owner-builder before commencement. The permit-holder is then responsible for all compliance and safety issues with regard to the project.

Responsibilities of the Owner-Builder (permit-holder):

  • Compliance with all building codes and regulations.

  • Reporting to the building surveyor after each mandatory notification stage is completed.

  • Ensuring all building works are carried out by the owner-builder.

  • Ensuring that in cases where volunteer labour is used to save costs, works such as electrical wiring and plumbing are always carried out by licensed contractors.

Owner-builder risk considerations

Never under estimate the potential risks, an owner builder can suffer for some, it can cause fatal heart attacks, building is one of the biggest challenges you are ever likely to face in your life, but the rewards both financially and personally are fantastic. That being said, the rewards of a successful building project should never be miscalculated. To eliminate the risk of costly mistakes, we at iSupervise4U can help you remove those risks.

These risks can be:


  • Project cost blowouts due to variations, incorrect budgets, inadequate estimating or cost increases, or not allowing for the cost of site protection and safety measures. To mitigate these risks we at iSupervise4U use professional quantity surveyor and project managers to accurately cost the project and allow for potential risks and contingencies.


  • Costs associated with rectifications required for non-compliant or faulty work, or lack of technical ability in managing and directing project works. As such it’s vital that a professional project manager is employed to oversee all works. This is why iSupervise4U takes it very seriously when it comes to quality.


  • Accidents and injuries can add to the cost of a project. In this case, it’s essential to have a good health and safety plan in place and adequate insurance cover for these risks. The safety plan will be managed by iSupervise4U.

Property values:

  • To prevent a drop in property values from the work, it is essential that all work is compliant, closely supervised and subjected to regular inspections from the building surveyor. iSupervise4U does not compromise on this aspect. As we treat our clients the way we want to be treated.

Unlicensed Contractors:

Make no mistake, contractors can be very difficult to deal with, they can cause all sorts of problems, and sometimes they carry out work with no license, meaning that their work is not guaranteed. When hiring contractors owner builders forget to check or ensure that the contractors are qualified and registered. We make sure at iSupervise4U that the contractor is required to provide you with a written contract and Warranty Insurance.

Cheap Products and Materials:

Using low quality or cheaply made products can be a hazard to the project and anyone living in the home. Cheap products and materials have a high failure rate and could end up costing you more in the long run with expensive repairs or refitting. We at iSupervise4U ensure the products you purchase are high quality and good enough to do the job.

Overdoing It:

While we are all tempted to take on more than we can handle overextending your abilities or physical capabilities will result in health risks and cost blowouts. Most owner builders are already doing a 35 – 40 hour week at work and the risk to your main income stream should not be under estimated. Engaging iSupervise4U is the correct action to finish the job on time, within budget and highest of quality. Do not make your experience a bad one where you lose money and time.

Poor Design:

The finished product will only be as good as the initial design. Take your time when planning and get it right. Poor design or altering the plan after the project is under way will cost more as will delays in production. iSupervise4U will provide assistance in organising the design aspect.

Not Enough Time:

Not allowing enough time to finish the project can cause you and your contractors` stress and risk shoddy workmanship. When you engage iSupervise4U, we will allow sufficient time when planning the project and communicate so you understand the processes and time constraints for each phase of the program.

Bad Budget Management:

All projects are subject to unforeseen circumstances and costing in a safety margin is good management. The allowance of an extra 10 – 15% should cover the project against cost blowouts due to problems. We can save you 20-30% of what builders will charge as their profit margins. We make sure we have a budget at the beginning and stick to that budget.

Full Control the Project:

The project is yours so the responsibility of proper control rests with you. With iSupervise4U, you do not need to be on site every day, watching, checking and monitoring the standard of workmanship and materials. While good relations with your workers and contractors are a bonus, care needs to be taken to ensure the relationship stays professional. Becoming too friendly with tradespeople could become a problem. The contractors aim is to do the job as quickly as possible, get paid and move on the next client while your aim is to get the job one properly and effectively. When you engage iSupervise4U we will stay in control of the project, not the sub-contractors.

Selling the Property:

Many owners of renovated properties do not understand their legal obligations when it comes to selling the property. If the value of the works exceed $5,000 and you sell the property within 6 years, you may have to provide Owner Builders Warranty Insurance for the new owners. To purchase the Warranty insurance you will need to obtain an Inspection Report from a Building Surveyor and fix any problems. This applies even if no building permit was issued and can apply to works done personally for maintenance, renovating or upgrading the existing dwelling or outbuildings. We at iSupervise4U make sure you do not have any dodgy work or potential claims against you.