Home Building Compensation (HBC) Cover/Owner Builder Permit

The Home Building Act 1989 requires builders and trades people to be licensed for the work that they do, and to have proper contracts and insurance in place for residential work. The compensation covers the property for faulty workmanship for six years after construction has been completed.
For most residential construction valued above $20,000 the builder is required to obtain HBC cover and submit a proof of cover to Council prior to the release of the Construction Certificate. For more information about HBC cover and exemptions that apply visit the State Insurance Regulatory Authority website.

If the works are to be done by the owner, then an Owner Builder permit may be required. An Owner Builder assumes the role and responsibility of the builder and holds a permit to do that work. The work may involve supervising, coordinating, construction of, or alteration, repair or addition to a dwelling. Where the market value of the work is:

  • Less than $10,000 an Owner Builder Permit is not required
  • Works exceeding $10,000 an Owner Builder Permit is required and can be applied for at the Department of Fair Trading
  • Works greater than $20,000 the Owner Builder is required to complete a Certificate in Owner Builder Compliance (Riverina Institute of Tafe) or training approved by the Commissioner of the Office of Fair Trading and lodge the Owner Builder Permit and copy of the certificate attained with Council.

The Department of Fair Trading can be contacted for information on Owner Builder Permits.