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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Opting out from the EQR/Fletchers process

NOTE: This post has been updated - see here


On the 19th of February there was a post on having repairs done by EQR/Fletchers (here). Some people may want to opt out of that process and take responsibility for their own repairs.

EQC, on their blog site (here), have outlined what is involved in opting out. As before the following has been taken direct from the February 18 post on the EQC blog, with changes to the layout into a bullet point form. None of the words, structure or meaning have been altered.
"If ... you wish to proceed with opting out we need to be satisfied repairs are correctly completed to your property. 
  • You will need to obtain a fully detailed quotation from your builder.
  • This quotation must cover the same areas as those detailed on the scope of works completed by the EQC estimators.
  • The quotation must be submitted to EQC for approval before proceeding with any repair work.
  • When acceptance of the quotation has been given, the builder may commence the repair work.
  • It is important to note that you will have to ensure that all repairs are carried out to a satisfactory standard and must comply with the Building Act.
  • Any disputes regarding non-performance of the builder or substandard repair work will lie with you."
Not mentioned in the above is the discovery of additional damage or cost over-runs. Basically you are on your own. If the job turns out to be more complex and/or more expensive than originally thought, the problem is all yours. EQC will not provide support or more money. If the contractor does not meet the necessary compliance standards then you are stuck with sorting the problem out. If the contractor takes forever, or goes bust, it is your problem. 

My opinion, for what it may be worth, is that opting out is a high risk proposition. If you are interested in it, check around. Don't just check up on the contractor, check also with your bank (if you need a mortgage - will they give you one? will they cover you for cost over-runs?), with your insurance company (will they cover the property while it is being repaired?, will they insure it afterwards?), and get a lawyer to check the contract.

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