HIA VIC New Homes Contract
For illustration purposes only

Delay in Home Building

Delay happens when the construction of your home takes longer than the period you and the Builder agreed upon in your contract, or when the construction is taking an unreasonable length of time to finish. 

Building Period

It’s important for you to know the Commencement and Building Period, because that clause lays out the period within which the building project should be completed. 

Another important clause is the Statutory Warranties, which says, in part, that the building must be completed within the period agreed upon, or within a reasonable time.

HIA Contract Building Period Clause
For illustration purposes only

Allowable Delays

Sometimes, there are circumstances beyond a Builder’s control, that cause them to slow down work; as for example, a decline in supplies and building materials. Another allowable delay is when the Builder validly suspends work for non-payment (by the owner) of progress payments

HIA VIC Building Contract Suspension of Work Clause
For illustration purposes only

Extension of Time

In cases where delay is justifiable, the Builder must send a Notice of Extension of Time.

Extension of Time Clause in HIA VIC Contract
For illustration purposes only

What Happens When Delay is Not Justified

When the cause of delay is not among those allowed by the contract. or if the Builder incurs in delay without having given a Notice of Extension of Time, the owner will be entitled to Damages, in an amount agreed to in the contract.

When Delay Escalates into Dispute

For illustration purposes only

Delay turns into a building dispute if the delay is not covered by a Notice for Extension of Time, or when the delay is unreasonable or not allowed, and the Builder does not pay Damages for the same.

How to Settle Dispute Arising From Construction Delays

1. The first option given by the HIA contract, is to end or terminate the contract for breach.

Termination of Contract Clause HIA VIC
For illustration purposes only

2. The second option is to undergo Dispute Resolution. The HIA contract tells you how.

HIA VIC Dispute Clause
For illustration purposes only

3. If the dispute remains unresolved, you may proceed to lodging a complaint with the VCAT, and with the court, if the matter remains in dispute after VCAT hearings.

How We Can Help

Construction Lawyer Melbourne has been in the active practice of Construction Law for more than 10 years now, and has the necessary expertise and skill set to help you with matters involving domestic building contracts and building disputes.