NHBRC – Q&A’s

The NHBRC – Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

A row of suburban houses

 

The NHBRC has a page with a number of questions that we also get on this website. The most common questions and answers we have listed here below with thanks to the NHBRC.  We must point out to all home owners and potential home owners, as well as all contractors and home builders, that the new home being built must, by law, be registered with the NHBRC. The builder or contractor also has to be registered with the NHBRC. The NHBRC will not consider a claim or complaint if this is not done. If the house or contractor has not been registered then they have broken the law and might be liable to a fine. There are links to the NHBRC site at the end of the Q&A’s where you will find more answers.

 

Q – How Does One Know Whether A Builder Is Registered With The NHBRC?

A – The NHBRC has established customer centers in all provinces. To find out if a builder is registered with the NHBRC you can contact your nearest customer center, search online or by calling the toll free number 0800200824.

 

Q – Does The NHBRC Conduct Inspections?

A – Every new house constructed must be inspected. If the house is enrolled prior to construction, the NHBRC is afforded the opportunity to carry out all necessary inspections. The number of inspections conducted per house is a function of the size and the complexity of the design of the house.

 

Q – What Does The NHBRC Inspect?

A – The following inspections are carried out:

Foundations
Roof height
Practical completion
Stormwater
Carpentry
Plumbing
Electrical
And waterproofing

 

Q – How Many Inspections Are Carried Out By The NHBRC In The Building Process Up To Completion Of A House?

A – A minimum of four inspections are carried out to ensure that the house is of good quality and that it will be fit for habitation. Housing consumers and home builders are encouraged to demand an inspection from the NHBRC during construction.

 

Q – How Does The NHBRC Handle Complaints?

A – The NHBRC has established complaint handling mechanisms, which have assisted many housing consumers. Each complaint is professionally and speedily processed on behalf of the housing consumer. According to our records the NHBRC has not failed any housing consumer who had a genuine structural defect. All home owners, public and private institutions and media houses are advised to send all the complaints received by it to the NHBRC for evaluation.

 

Q – What Should a Home Owner Do When There Is a Problem with a Builder’s Work?

A – The housing consumer (home owner) should contact the home builder within three to seven days. The housing consumer can approach the NHBRC if the home builder fails to attend to the problem.

 

Q – Under What Circumstances Will The NHBRC Do Remedial Work To My House?

A – The NHBRC is responsible for repair of major structural defects which occur to an enrolled home.  The process is initiated once it is established that the home builder is either liquidated, unwilling or is unable to undertake remedial works. When the homebuilder disputes the findings and recommendations in the conciliation report or the recommendation of a competent person (Engineer), the NHBRC will assist the housing consumer by undertaking remedial work.

 

Q – What Happens If Major Structural Defects Arise Within The First Five Years Of Occupation?

A – The NHBRC’s fund for rectification covers a home which includes:

Private drainage system from the structure up to the municipal connection or the cesspit connection
Any garage or storeroom
Any permanent outbuilding designed for residential purposes
Any retaining wall
In the case of sectional title unit, it includes the common property in terms of the sectional Titles Act.

 

There are more Answers on the NHBRC site.

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259 comments

  1. Can i make any alterations to increase my kitchen side since it is 1.3 to my neighbors wall and since the seware and water pipes are running on the kitchen side.? Can i build a double garage any side from any point in my yard. My number 07xxxxxxx

  2. Hi Petunia,
    Have a look under the Building Extensions Menu there is a link called Boundary Walls & Fences or go to this link – Boundary Walls & Fences. That page will give you some guidelines as to what is allowed. Because all sites are different the best thing to do is to contact your local Building Inspector and he will know the restrictions for your property.

  3. want to know whats wrong with my room,my floor is always wet,even the walls they
    shows white as if the walls absorb water.

  4. Hi Seed,
    This sounds to me from the information you have supplied that there was no damp-proof course (plastic underlay) put under your foundation. There might not be any under your walls either. You can read here the basics of how a slab should be cast ownerbuilding.co.za/concrete-slab. The white that you see on the walls is called efflorescence and is the result of dissolved salts from the cement, concrete and mortar leeching out. You do not say who the owner is or who the builder was, but you should contact them and point this out.

  5. I am currently do additions to our house (in which we live). I am not
    employing a contractor. I am doing the work myself, mostly on
    weekends, together with casual labourers (bricklayer and manual
    labour). How do I apply for exemption from registration – i.e. as an
    “owner builder”? I have tried to contact the Durban office several
    times but the phone just rings.

  6. Hi Rowen,
    There is the exemption form that you can download from the Owner Building Site >Click Here<. There are all the national contact numbers on this page as well >Click Here<, if there is a problem getting through on any number then phone their national number 0800 200 824

  7. What does the following paragraph specifically mean? Nobody can tell me. “The council requests a bank financial on the selling price of the unit shall be guarantee in terms of Regulation Gazette No. 6680 section 14(7). Such financial guarantee will be kept for a period of 5 years until the warranty expires.

  8. Hi Willem,
    We are not the NHCRC. I am guessing that you are talking about the National Home Builders Registration Council and not your local council. I suggest you contact them directly on their toll-free number 0800 200 824. The wording of that clause seems to be missing a few words and does not make any sense to me either. Do not sign anything until they sort this out. Tell them to check the wording of their contracts before they send them to clients!

  9. Need to know any disadvantages of using stucco as a floor interior as appose to normal tiles or wood.

  10. All products have their own special advantages and disadvantages. Stucco floors generally look smooth and luxurious and have a mottled look. They do need to be properly laid and maintained. A brilliant brand that has similar products is Cemcrete. I have provided a link so you can check out their products.

  11. My neighbour is busy building a wall for a double story house on the boundary line. This is protruding a few centimetres onto my driveway leaving me with not enough space to park and open my car to get off.Is he allowed to do this?Who can I contact in Durban for advise.

  12. Barry absolutely not! And if they are building on the boundary they probably need neighbour’s permission – i.e. written permission from you. Encroachment is not permitted unless you have given written permission. So anything that encroaches (protrudes) onto your land must be removed. You need to contact the City of Durban / eThekwini Municipality. I have given you the link to their website. As far as I know Cape Town is the only municipality that allows building up to a boundary without neighbour’s consent. I suggest you go to the municipal offices and ask to see someone of authority in the town planning department – or a senior building inspector.

  13. what are the certificates given by building inspector when a house is completed I believe they are three just don’t know what are they

  14. There are quite a lot of certificates that may be issued.
    I think there is a proof of site classification certificate which is issued prior to building
    There’s a certificate for the appointment of a competent person
    Where additional competent persons are appointed as part of the build, they have to supply certain certificates.
    Certificate of electrical compliance – from the qualified and registered electrician
    Certificate of occupancy
    Certificate of completion
    Agrément certification for all houses that are constructed using non-standard or unconventional methods of construction
    The NHBRC also issues completion certificates.
    Probably others too.

  15. Good day,
    I am not happy with some of the workmanship done by Full Circle who
    are the builders of my new house situated at 35 Mussel Ave, St Francis
    Bay. I would like an inspection done to discuss/clarify my concerns
    and outstanding work and “snaglist”

    Can someone please urgently phone me to arrange this.

    Thanks,
    Irma Smit

  16. Hi Irma,
    We do not do site inspections.
    I have done a search for “Full Circle” on the NHBRC website and the only company that shows up is – 9345 Mpumalanga Full Circle Projects Twenty Two CC 2004/03/27 – and they are suspended.
    From what I can see on the stfrancisbay.co.za website Full Circle is a merger of two former companies and they may be registered under one or both of those names.
    All building companies must, by law be registered with the NHBRC. Phone Full Circle and check with them.
    When you have the registered company name you can check the links I have given you below for more info.
    The NHBRC links are at the bottom of this page: buildingregulations.co.za/national-home-builders-registration-council/ 
    There is a link to the database as well where you can check if the builder is registered. And all their contact details are there as well.
    Ask them about inspections.
    What you can also do is get an independent inspector in to give you a report as this will also help.

  17. Thanks for your reply Penny. I have contacted the labour inspector. He says that summons have been issued. That doesnt help us as my neighbour still carries on. What will happen to the building,will it have to be dropped down? What is the most logical step for us to follow now?

  18. Barry there is not a lot that you can do other than let the law run its course. I would keep a diary of events – write up as accurately as possible what has happened to date – e.g. when you first approached your neighbour, when you spoke to the building inspector etc – on which date (as accurately as possible). As things happen from now on also keep a record. And I would also take photographs of the work ongoing – at least on a daily basis. If it comes to a court case, you will be able to prove to the court that your neighbour simply ignored all warnings.
    The only other thing you could do is to get a lawyer to apply for an urgent interdict to stop your neighbour from building. I don’t know what it would cost, but it might be worth considering. You would have to prove that the building is adversely affecting you in various ways… which probably wouldn’t be difficult. You could ask an attorney for a quotation.
    At the end of the day, if your neighbour has blatantly broken the law (which seems clear) – and you refuse to give consent for him to retain what he has built, it’s very likely he will have to demolish.
    Let us know what happens. And good luck.

  19. Bobby Bassett

    Hi NHRBC,

    You noted that the NHRBC does not do site inspections but why does one of the answers to a question above note that you inspect the following:

    Foundations
    Roof Height
    Practical completion
    Etc…

    Also, I have a problem with the following builder
    Granville Du Plesiss
    Gap Housing is the name I think he is trading as.

    My dwelling is currently at “roof height” and there is many defects with the garage brickwork,
    eg:
    cracked bricks
    top section where the support beams are fixed large sections (3 rows of bricks) of the brickwork is breaking off.

    Also, when the living room was tiled you can clearly see that the outside wall is out with 30mm front to back. Door leading from the garage to the living room has a gap that lead from 5mm to 15mm so it looks like the floor was not “screeted” level.

    How many days does he get to resolve the issue and how do I get the NHRBC to inspect the dwelling “roof height” to see if it falls under specifications.

    Please, I need help with the above mentioned issues asap.

    Kind Regards,
    Bobby Bassett

  20. Hi Bobby,
    I think that you have the wrong end of the stick here. WE ARE NOT THE NHBRC! If you read the info on this site correctly then you will see that we are private citizens just like you. We do though have many years experience and try to help and advise people like you.
    The first thing you need to establish is whether your builder is registered with the NHBRC. I have looked on their site and see that there are 4 “Gap” builders listed: 2 registered, 1 expired and 1 suspended. Note that builders are not permitted – by law – to offer construction services unless they are registered. So if the builder is not registered – and your house is not enrolled with them – then he has broken the law! You can check all these details on the NHBRC website here: nhbrc.org – or phone them.
    If the builder is registered, the NHBRC should have been doing site inspections – see this link to their website – and scroll to 8. Does The NHBRC Conduct Inspections? & 9. What Does The NHBRC Really Inspect?. Your house will also be covered by their warranty scheme.
    If you builder is not registered, and the house is not enrolled, then you can throw him off the site and claim damages. But you will need to consult with an attorney and go through the legal process to get your money back. Presumably you have a contract with the builder. You need to check this as well. Just remember that if he is not registered with the NHBRC he is breaking the law – so I doubt that you would be bound to honour your part of the contract. Again, an attorney will be able to advise.

  21. Hans Roussou

    Good day,

    I do small repairs for home owners and currently I have a home owner that want me to install a handrail at some steps to the entrance of the house. The owner does not want it according to building regulations, I would like to know who would be held responsable if someone gets hurt at the steps, the owner or the installer. Can I request the owner to sign a document stating that he had been quoted according to building regulations but insisted that the job must be done to his design, would this make him the responsable person?

  22. Hans that is exactly what you should do. It may even pay you to get an attorney to draw up the letter. You need to state in the document that you will use quality materials and accepted methods, but that you cannot be held responsible for any aspect once the job has been handed over. You should also get him to put his request in writing. Good luck.

  23. Hi

    How do I know that a builder is not going to run away with the deposit made into his account for purchasing materials and how do I arrange for these NHBRC inspections and at whose costs.

    regards
    Tom

  24. Thomas if your builder is registered with the NHBRC – which he must be by law – he will enroll your house with the NHBRC and they must then do the inspections at their cost. Contact them directly to check at which stages they will be doing the inspections and then make sure they do them.
    If your builder is running a reputable business, he isn’t going to run away with your deposit. If he does – contact the NHBRC and the police! … and Carte Blanche

  25. lol, thanks as concerning as that was it was funny as well 🙂

  26. Hi NHBRC

    I have a NHBRC registered builder whom has not completed the additions and alterations to my home. Additionally the workmanship with certain finishes, according to me was not of an acceptable standard. After confronting him with this, he now demands payment for stuff that was never contracted for before he completes the project? I am not in a position nor prepared to pay him. What is my recourse?

  27. Hello Vees, We are not the NHBRC. You need to contact them directly – this link shows their contact details.
    However my advice is that you withhold payment.

  28. Hi
    I am trying to find somewhere where I can find reputable builders, there are so many con artists out there, is there a link or a site that anybody knows or a builder in the JHB north area that can assist.

  29. Hello, I´m a still a student (architecture) and I´m doing a design for a game lodge.

    I live in Germany, just like the owner of the area were the game lodge should be build. They own an area about 30 miles northern Port Elisabeth, so they have already a home there for more than 10 years now. The first (pre-)Design for the gamelodge is already finish. I´m also a mason with graduation, so they want me to do the work as a project manager. A lot of work should be done by people without an employment.
    I´m able to manage the foundation and the construction of walls and roof. So I need engineers who do
    inspections for my planing (exact calculations) and also for the building process. If I understood right, it is necessary to do this, so the inspectors give green light and the work can go on. Anyway, if law or not, I have to be sure about my planing calculations so far, so I need someone who is able to help me developing my design, especially in questions of detailing.
    Further the owner and me are in Germany right now, so I have to do the most important step in planing
    almost in the end-phase of the planing process: research about the ground-situation (if necessary on my own with ground-probing) and the grounding with terrain-sections. I guess I will need some kind of an approval before any work can start.
    How I said in the beginning, I´m still a student, so I guess I have no legitimation at all to manage any building processes.

    My question: Will the NHBRC help me? Do they offer services witch make a workflow able between the owner, the building contractor and me? Do you have any tips for me?

  30. So what I want to find out is, if the NHBRC offers an outline builing application and how far they do this, if they do. And i would like to know if this is a general free service or not, or when is a project so complex to the NHBRC that an outline building application cannot be required easily and for free.

    Sorry for the lot of text and questions, these things are new to me and I have to find in. Of course I try to get answers for my questions directly from the NHBRC. Anyway, if you can help me a little bit would mean much help to me. Thank you.

  31. Hi Anne,
    This is a major problem in SA, trying to find an honest reliable builder from all the chancers does not seem to be easy. The best place to start is with the NHBRC database. Even though the NHBRC are only concerned with brand new houses their database of builders does give a status for the builders. They are either registered, expired, suspended, de-registered or on hold. You can search by province as well. It does not give contact details but if you do a search for the name I am sure you can find them fairly easily. If they are too big a construction company to handle your job then ask them if they can recommend one. There is also the Master Builders Association, they have offices in all provinces that you can contact on their website here: mbsa.org.za Or you can call the head office here: 011 205 9000

  32. Tobi your question doesn’t make sense. I have no idea what you are aiming to do. Build? Apply for membership to the NHBRC? Write a project! Building applications go to the local authority – with plans for approval. There is all the information you need in the section on the NHBRC on this site PLUS on their site. I suggest you start by reading this.

  33. Tobi you are not qualified or registered with the necessary organizations in South Africa so you are absolutely NOT “able to manage the foundation and the construction of walls and roof”. It would be totally illegal for you to do this unless there is a superior person in charge of the project – a competent person – i.e. an architect or an engineer who IS registered. They would then ultimately be responsible for the foundations etc.
    And a short answer to your question regarding the NHBRC is NO! If the owner is planning to owner build, he/she needs an exemption from the NHBRC – and then will need to follow the regular process as described above and elsewhere on this web site. If he/she is employing a building contractor (you do mention a contractor) that person/company needs to be registered with the NHBRC and the house needs to be enrolled. The NHBRC will then do its regular inspections. They do not offer services as such.

  34. Hi,

    I current have a flatlet in the yard of my plot. The flat has a concrete roof and i would essentailly either like to deck it out such that I get an awesome view or alternatively go up a level and have a patio on the top level to access the view.

    Is there resitictions prohibiting me from doing this? i.e. do i need permission, if so will this permission be required for the deck option as well?

    please advise,

    Thanks,

    Ryan

  35. Apologies if this is a stupid question, but can anyone advise on the difference between a Marley and a Corobrik double roman roof tile? Besides the price…

  36. Hi Nadine,
    They would both have Agrément certificates for the tile so the quality should be the same. the only difference will be the design and how they are layed and fixed to the roof beams/battens.

  37. Can you email me documents/info as to how I can register as a developer

  38. Good day

    I would like to register the company with the NHBRC.Kindly send me guidelines and forms

  39. Johan de Bruyn

    Can you please mail me the documents I have to fill out for the renewal of my NHBRC enrollment

  40. Hi Johan,
    You better get hold of the NHBRC then, the link to the NHBRC website is on this page.

  41. Hi Patrick,
    You better get hold of the NHBRC then, the link to the NHBRC website is on this page.

  42. Hi D Motala,
    You better get hold of the NHBRC then, the link to the NHBRC website is on this page.

  43. Hi Ryan,
    It is difficult to make a judgement call on this as I am not sure how strong or stable the “concrete roof” is. I suggest you find out from the people who constructed the roof if it is strong enough to take the weight of people using it as a deck. To answer your question, no there should not be any restrictions you using the roof as a deck. Only that for safety council will want you to put up a railing around the area done to NBR specs. If you want to go all out and have another floor with a covered patio then you will have to get plans done and submitted.

  44. I need the nhbrc to contact me or supply me with a office number in arcadia pretoria regarding development

  45. please come and help webought damp new homes, faulty geysers, cracked walls, these ar newly built homes sold at 600000 – 700000,we became tenant in 2011. Please help

  46. Belinda Macintosh

    Hi there
    Could you tell me if a builder is responsible for drainage and levels after a build or is it the landscapers responsibility?
    Many thanks

  47. Vincent Qwabe

    Subject:
    List of regitered builders

    Message:
    I urgently need a registered builder with reputable tracking record to build a house in KwaMsane (Mtubatuba). I have already secured land and my plan has been approved by the Municipality. Please assist

  48. Subject:
    terms and conditions
    Message:
    Hi i have just opened up a construction company and would like if someone could share with me a standard terms and conditions invoice used in the building trade.

  49. Hi KG,
    Get hold of the NHBRC they help builders and developers with the documentation that you want, check their website for addresses and phone numbers here: NHBRC website

  50. Vincent I suggest you contact the NHBRC – or have a look at their database online. The municipality may also have some suggestions. Just be sure that the person you use is registered with the NHBRC.

  51. Belinda if it is drainage from the building, it is the builder’s responsibility – in fact the plumber’s. Levels in the surrounding garden will be the landscaper’s responsibility.

  52. Mlamli – It looks as if you are trying to contact the NHBRC – I have given you a link to their Contact Us page.

  53. Ike the NHBRC is not going to contact you. You need to contact them. Here is a link to their Contact Us page.

  54. Hi,
    Bought a new house in 2013. Have had issues with the roof leaking. Builder sent his roofing guys to repair, they came once but the problem persists. We have attempted to get them back but without any luck.
    I eventually called a roofing company to give me a quote top sort out this leak and they have done inspection and told me
    “The leaks were pointed out to us. On further inspection of the roof we have noticed that certain sections of the roof there is a marley underlayment as well as black plastic and white plastic installed in sections.
    The existing valley gutters the tiles are butted together. Due to heavy rain this is causing
    water to ingress to the underside of the plastic. The tiles are blocking the water from
    flowing out. We have also noticed that the ridge capping and hip ridges the cement is
    broken. This may be caused by heavy wind.
    We therefore propose to install new plastic, battens, and u-bentaluminium valley gutters as
    a long term solution.”

    Do I have a case against the builder to sort out these issues?

  55. Hi

    I am urgently looking for some info from a consumer/client point of view. I have had mixed responses on this. A builder has installed down lights in my bathroom in my guest house and he installed waterproof downlights. Now I had a different builder do my house renovations, and he installed normal downlights in the bathroom and says that it doesn’t have to be waterpoof downlights. He has to also issue an electricity COC to me and says that he will.

    Is it a requirement that all electrical sockets, lights etc. in a bathroom, needs to be waterproof and if so, where can I find info to be able to take this builder on about this as he refuses to change them to waterproof lights on his own cost.

  56. Wonderfull information to build a house

  57. David Prinsloo

    If I want to build a new house, what actions much I take towards the NHBRC ?

  58. David your contractor needs to be registered with the NHBRC, or if you plan to owner build, you need to get an exception from the NHBRC.

  59. Sondra, Bathroom fittings must definitely be completely encased to avoid shorting and electric shocks, and double insulated with the bulb and all metal parts covered. Light switches must be either outside the bathroom or fitted with a pull cord.
    Since the risk of electric shock is greater in the presence of water or moisture, you will not be able to qualify for an electrical compliance certificate if you have not installed water- and splash-resistant light fittings in your bathroom. Normal electric socket outlets and therefore, free-standing or portable light fittings are not permitted in bathrooms at all.
    However this is not covered in the National Building Regulations. The other two SANS to look at (which I unfortunately don’t currently have copies of, or access to) are SANS 10142: The wiring of premises, and SANS 10114-1: Interior lighting – Part 1: Artificial lighting of interiors.
    I would contact your local authority and ask if they can advise you. Are you certain that this electrician is fully qualified and registered with the local authority? If he isn’t then he cannot provide you with a certificate of compliance.

  60. Paul, leaking roofs is one of the issues that is covered by the NHBRC warranty. Your builder should be registered with the NHBRC. If he isn’t then report him to them for fraud. If he is, ask them to do an inspection urgently. There is more about their warranties on the their website.

  61. Subject:
    NHBRC CERTIFICATE

    Message:
    I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW HOW TO GO ABOUT GETTING MY NHBRC CERTIFICATE

  62. Marina Breed

    Subject:
    NHBRC MANUALS

    Message:
    I refer to my e-mail that I have sent a while ago, which I have not
    received any aknowledgement or feedback of.
    I have been trying to download the NHBRC Manuals, but I still cannot
    get to the correct website.
    PLEASE HELP ME A S A P.
    TY

  63. You cannot download the manuals Marina. You have to order them from the NHBRC. Here is a link to their contact numbers.

  64. Andre van der Westhuizen

    Good evening.

    When building a filling station for example, do all electrical underground cables be a certain depth, and covered by a warning tape at another depth above the cable ?

    Regards

    Andre van der Westhuizen

  65. Andre, It’s largely irrelevant what you are building. But the regulations that relate to electricity are not part of the building regulations. These are separate; but since you must, by law, use a qualified and registered electrician for any electrical work, this professional will be able to advise exactly what it required and legal.

  66. Hi my neighbour directly behind me is building 3 story flats, does he require permission from us to build it , its 9 m high and build 1 m from the boundry. please let me know if it is legal

  67. What are the rules pertaning to safety for workmen on a house building site, ie Hard Hats, Reflective Clothing, Protective goggles, movable equipment etc?

  68. Chris this is covered by the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations (OHS) not the National Building Regulations.

  69. Muhammed it depends a) on the zoning regulations and/or bylaws of your local authority, and b) on whether you neighbour has approved plans.

  70. Can u help

    I am employed as a wet works foreman at a large company and I recently confronted our manager regarding electrical pipes (high voltage cables). Running under the shower barth and toilet They cover it with screet and tile over it before the inspectors do their inspections We have had water running out by the light switches as well as major water damage in the barth rooms

    Please tell me if this is legal and what my next step will be We are building 2nd floor duplex

  71. Robert, this sounds highly illegal and hugely dangerous – unless they were first encased in an SABS-approved pipe of some kind.
    Further, there should not be any light switches in the bathrooms.
    The NHBRC has a Fraud Hotline: 0800 203 698
    You should also contact the local authority

  72. Hallo
    We are renting a home in Pretoria with the options to buy. Our naghbours have a lapa extension from their home directly built to the wall that seperates us. This lapa is 1,5m from my back door. He uses it as a living room. Also have a chimney that faces my home. In the winter we can hardly breath in our home even if we close all windows and the back door. Can this be legal? and if not what can i do about this?

  73. Hi there , need some advice please !
    I have a pre-cast boundary wall to the rear of my property which had been built + – 15years ago.
    My neighbour has been filling up soil behind the pre-cast wall over the years.
    The wall (5m long x 1.9m high) has now collapsed.
    In my opinion the failure has resulted due to the soil being filled up against the wall.
    My pre-cast wall was not designed or erected as a retaining structure.
    My neighbour has been notified of this but is doing nothing about it.
    What steps can i take to get him to sort the wall out?
    Regards
    Shanon

  74. It is probably illegal. Contact your local authority and ask them to send a building inspector to investigate. But put the request in writing. You should probably contact your neighbour first and state your case. If none of that works there are additional steps you can take, but try the simple route first.

  75. Shanon I have no doubt that you are right about the cause of the collapse. However unfortunately I don’t think your local council is likely to get involved as this is a civil case. I would put demands in writing viz. that the neighbour repairs or rebuilds the wall within a specified time frame (e.g. seven or ten days) and state that if he does not comply with your demand you will have no option but to issue summons. It would be better to get an attorney to write the letter though, as your neighbour is more likely to take it seriously. The only hitch might be if your neighbour erected the wall. But if it has collapsed on your property he is obliged to remove the mess.

  76. Hi. Could someone just give me some advice? I’m in the process of building a new home. I have a family memeber who is a competent builder (although he does not build for a living). The banks require the builder to be NHBRC registered before they approve the bond. Can he register for a certificate?
    Thank you.

  77. what can be done if a neighbor over the road, refuse to give consent for a carport.

  78. Why does your neighbour across the road need to give consent? Has the local authority said that this is necessary? If your carport is less than 40 square metres in size and open-sided it is considered minor building work and you don’t even need plans! Have a look at the link I have provided for more information about minor building work.

  79. Kirsten he can but he will then have to pay all the relevant NHBRC fees. You do need a competent person – who is qualified as defined by the law – to be in charge of the build, so he would have to comply, or you will need to employ someone else.

  80. I bought a property a year ago. I have a retaining wall that I maintain. My neighbours have requested that I paint the side facing their home. Does law state that I have to paint the outside wall?

  81. Hi Brendon, A retaining wall strictly speaking only has soil on the other side, are you talking about a boundary wall between yourselves. Unless there is a clause in your title deed, or if there is a separate agreement that you, or the previous owner, signed together with the neighbour, as to who is responsible for the wall then common law in SA states that the wall is deemed to be shared and each owner must be responsible for their respective sides. There is a but, if the wall can be shown to be totally on one or another side of the boundary then that property owner is the owner and is responsible for it and can do as he pleases with the wall. There is another clause in the building regulations that refers to unsightly and offensive building work that could affect neighbours. This is more aimed at buildings rather than boundary walls.

  82. Hi, i had alterations done at my house. Does the Law applies on the builder under the Building Act for alterations? Or is the Act only there for New Homes??
    The “builder” is not registered with the NHBRC. He did not finish the job, lots of problems and also wall cracking. Luckily i did not pay him all his money, but its going to cost me more to repair and finish the
    Job. Now he sue me for the outstanding amount. I want to institute a counterclaim.
    My layer said in terms of the Act i do not need to pay the builder any money because he is not registered with the NHBRC?? Is this possible??
    On NHBRC website FAQ
    6. Does The Act Make Provision For Alterations and Improvements?
    The Act does not make provisions for the alterations, conversions, additions or improvements, but the matter is being discussed with an intent to make a recommendation to the National Department on Housing.
    Thanks

  83. Dear Penny

    I bought a house in an Estate through an Estate agent. The house was build to roof height in around 2005. The previous owner passed away and the property was sold by his widow.

    I requested Approved Munic. Plans as well as NHRBC certification as well as engineering certificates for the foundation/stairs and the 1st floor from the owner through the Agent. I was told that all document will be supplied but the widow is struggling to find it! Only after the transfer came through I discovered that NONE of these docs exists – the plans were never submitted to council! (When I contacted the municipality before the transfer they told me that I am not the owner and are not allowed to give me any information on this property)

    I got an Architect to draw up new plans and he is currently helping me with the approval for that.
    He inspected the site and could find no structural flaws or cracks or shifting of soil and said that
    because the house was build in 2005 that those errors would have showed up already.
    BUT I need to find out how can I get an engineer to approve the building and how can I get NHBRC certification.

    I have photos of the house showing the “interlocking concreteslab system”

    Is the previous owner responsible for the enrollment and be held liable for the late enrolment with the NHBRC?

    I really would appreciate any advice or help

    Kind Regards

    Leani

  84. Hi there

    My question is this. I live in a prominent (affluent) estate in Midrand. We built in 2011 and live on an incline. At times of heavy rains, we find groundwater seeping through our driveway paving for days post the rain. In addition we have recently started work (digging) to put in a pool and have found that there are major groundwater streams 1.8 meters deep which have caused major delays in the construction due to the constant stream of shallow water. We are concerned about the ling term effects of this water and the dangers that it may hold to structural damage (foundations) etc. The pool contractor has led us to believe that this is a well known issue within the estate. We were not told of this upon building.Is there recourse if anything goes wrong with this house? Is it possible to force developer/builder to come back and build under ground drainage systems to direct water away from the house foundations? And who is responsible? the builder or the developer?

    Please advise – we really would appreciate your experience here.

  85. I purchased a small farm recently with a brand new dwelling (House & Double Garage). The Bank Requires a NHBCR certificate for fincance purposes. The seller now claim that he buildt the house a owner builder? He also claimed that this house was an existing house renovated.
    1. Wiho’s responsibility is it to obtain a NHBCR certificate the Buyer or the Seller
    2. How do one obtain an NHBCR Certificate after the finalisation of the house? (New House)
    3. What do one need to proof that it was an existing house that was renovated.

    Any feedback on this?
    Thank you

  86. Hi Penny
    Waterproofing inspections carried out by the NHBRC do that include DPC at floorlevel, under window sills and above lintols in cavity walls.
    Regards Hannes

  87. Hi, I need some advice.
    I have neighbours who rezoned their property as ‘Residential 3’ in 2011. We never objected. They are now planning to start construction. When I met them they were quite friendly until I asked what they were planning to build. Their level of aggression toward my family has been quite extreme. They refuse to show us plans, or even discuss what they are planning to build.

    Are we, as neighbours, entitled to know what is being built? Are we entitled to see the plans?
    Thanks,
    Carminda

  88. Hannes I’m not sure. If you look at their warranty scheme document it only mentions inspection of house plans and foundations. Perhaps phone them and ask. I don’t think building inspectors (council) even do this – they look at foundations and then the slab – so they would inspect the DPC at base. It’s up to the competent person to make sure that this work is done correctly.

  89. Carminda I am not sure what Res 3 allows (it looks as if you are in Gauteng). I know in CT it may allow flats, group housing etc. Your neighbours are not under any obligation to show you plans, unless they are going to be doing something that doest comply with either the building regs of the zoning by-laws. But I would be extremely concerned at their refusal to do so. It seems to imply that they might be planning something they think you are not going to be happy with. I would be sure to watch like a hawk and if anything seems to be dubious to contact the local authority. In fact you might contact the planning department of the City of Jhb (if that’s where you are) and ask if there is anything they can do to help – e.g. to ensure that the neighbour has properly approved plans etc.

  90. Amelda, if the seller built as an owner builder he, by law, needed to get an exemption from the NHBRC not to register and enroll the house. It is his responsibility – and if he didn’t do that he has built the house illegally – and it could be demolished. There are hefty fines that the NHBRC can levy if someone has done this… but only the NHBRC will decide whether a certificate can be issued in these circumstances – i.e. after the fact. If the house was simply renovated, then you must insist that the owner supplies plans of the original dwelling. The local authority should have these on file, so you could try that route as well – maybe do that first because they would also be able to track what rates and taxes have been paid on the property which would indicate when the building was first constructed.

  91. i am a building student, i have an assignment and i need assistance. the question says: “you receive a frantic call from the client which notes his concern that the building is not registered with the NHBRC as per Housing Protection Act, and fears of non compliance. advise the client and note any steps which need to be taken in this regard.

  92. Sinotando, If you read the information on this page, it will give you a good idea of the procedures that have to be followed. There is also a link to their page on that page. Here is a link to the NHBRC site where you can download the Housing Protection Act.
    This is from their site:
    “Enrolment of new homes
    The Housing Consumers Protection Measures Act 1998 requires all new homes to be enrolled with the NHBRC 15 days prior to construction. The home enrolment insures consumers against poor building practises and permits the NHBRC to conduct building inspections at key stages of construction. Enrolment of homes is subject to a fee which is scaled according to the value of the home.”
    If this is not done, the builder can be prosecuted. It isn’t clear from the question what role you are playing in the build, presumably the architect or draughtsperson. If so you would get in touch with the builder and make sure the house was immediately enrolled. The process is explained on the NHBRC website. Good luck with your assignment.

  93. thank you penny. In the given scenario i am the project manager.

  94. If it is a well known problem and it was not disclosed when you bought the property, I am fairly certain that it is a latent defect of the property – though it might be termed something different. I assume that any recourse would be via whoever you bought from. But I am not a lawyer and the only way you’re likely to get anyone back to construct additional drainage systems will be by taking legal action. But before you go to a lawyer, check all the small print because the developer and/or builder may well have covered themselves e.g. by adding clauses like “in the event of damage by heavy rain…. ” they will not be liable.
    One thing that bothers me is that the local authority should call for various reports if there is a problem with land. Perhaps they were not aware of problems in this area until construction began. Likewise they should not permit people to build on 50-year flood plains – but they do.

  95. If it is true that the agent and previous owner told you they would supply these documents – and that they don’t exist – this is fraud! You can take legal action against them both.
    Whoever built the house was responsible for the enrollment of the house … and I imagine you can hold the previous owner liable. Your architect should be able to organise for an engineer to examine the building. To complete the building you will need to ensure that you use a builder who is registered with the NHBRC and can enroll the house. I am not sure what the attitude of the NHBRC will be to fines and so on, but I think it would be morally wrong of them to hold you responsible in the circumstances. Let us know what happens. Good luck.

  96. The same would apply … contact the builder immediately. Spell out the procedure he has to follow …

  97. Chris the NHBRC is only concerned about enrolling new homes… however no builder is permitted to work as a builder unless registered with the NHBRC. This means that he is working illegally. You can notify the NHBRC of this via their fraud line. So your lawyer is quite right. I would simply ignore his demands for payment and write back to say that he is operating illegally and that the work is in any case substandard and unacceptable – and incomplete.

  98. Thank You very much for the help. The case is already in court and i must now do n “plea and hand in a counter claim. Wish me luck please

  99. Good luck Chris. Let us know what happens.

  100. I saw the question asked by amelda. What is the procedure to be followed by builder when he totally demolished the old building and rebuild a new house partly on the old foundation. Must he register with the NHBRC?

  101. Jokkie if someone demolishes a building they are not REBUILDING – they are going to have to build from scratch. This also means that the foundations need to be good for the new structure. New plans will be required – which must be drawn by a competent person – and the builder must be registered with the NHBRC to be permitted to build legally. If the house is an owner building project, that person needs to apply to the NHBRC for an exemption.

  102. Subject:
    Building of Log Cabins

    Message:
    Please can you advise me on any regulations pertaining to the building of log cabins on private properties for rental.
    Thanks
    Regards
    Glen

  103. Subject:
    shipping containers

    Message:
    Good morning,

    I cant seem to find any building regulations on a shipping container home could you please advice me as to where i can get such information.

    Kind regards
    Le-Ana

  104. There is no building regulation that applies specifically to containers, though if incorporated into a house, all the relevant buildings regs must be complied with viz. plumbing, glazing, lighting, foundations etc. In addition, you will need to have an agrement certificate that specifies how the container will be used.
    Agrément certificate
    certificate that confirms fitness-for-purpose of a non-standardized product, material or component or the acceptability of the related non-standardized design and the conditions pertaining thereto (or both) issued by the Board of Agrément South Africa”

  105. All the relevant building regs apply Glen – from foundations to roofs. You just need to refer to the relevant sections – e.g. timber frame walls. In terms of rental this is covered in the local bylaws.

  106. Penny can you please help me..I want to know, if I want to build my own 2 bedroom house on my property.I want to build it for me and my children and not to sold it.The plans was already approve.Must I registered at the NHBRC if I do it my self and dont used n building contractor.Can you please send me a mail.

    Thank you

  107. bronwen goldby

    What are the regulations in respect of geyers for a house renovation – do you have to put a solar geyser or heat pump in, or can you use a regular geyser?

  108. Bronwen you do not have to put in a solar heater or heat pump. SANS 10252-1 (2012) lists a number of different types of water heaters (aka geysers) including:
    Fixed type water heaters – “Standard water heaters and solar water heaters shall comply with the requirements in SANS 151, and any electric instantaneous water heater shall comply with the requirements in SANS 1356.” & “Gas-operated water heaters shall comply with SANS 1808-24 and SANS 1539. For information on the mandatory requirements of gas water heaters see annex A.”
    Water heaters that use indirect electrical heating – basically using heat transfer
    Water heaters that use direct electrical heating – two types are mentioned, those that use immersion elements and those that use dry elements. I think is mainly for kettles etc.
    Interestingly this standard states: “In urban areas, the most common method of heating water is by an immersion type electrical resistance element mounted in an insulated storage cylinder, commonly called a geyser. Geysers require little maintenance.”

  109. Llewellyn, You need to apply to the NHBRC for an exemption to register. You will then be a bona fide owner builder. However you will still need a competent person to be part of the project. See the link I have given you.

  110. I have already started with foundation of my house. I did not enrol my house at nhbrc. Is it a must that I do enrol my house at nhbrc. I’m building from my own pocket not bond. I don’t intent selling my house before five years. Is it late to enrol since foundation has already been build

  111. Thanks Penny

  112. Nandi, You need to apply to the NHBRC for an exemption to build as an owner builder – then you do not need to enroll the house.

  113. Desmond Theron

    Subject:
    Series of Defects on property

    Message:
    Good Morning
    I just need to know what I stand to do if a property built by a
    developer have a series of deffects before and after the retention
    period of 3 months. The deffects however now continue to appear
    meaning i am paying for a property an in addidion to that i am fixing
    poor workmanship.

  114. Subject:
    Building Licence

    Message:
    Good afternoon, I would like to know what the procedure would to get a building license in SA please

  115. Desmond it depends on your contract. Also, if you asked for defects to be fixed and they haven’t been, you must continue to push the developer to fix these. The developer/builder should be registered with the NHBRC – if they aren’t then they are building illegally. The NHBRC has a warranty scheme. Contact them for more information.

  116. I saw an advert for land in an estate with approved building plans and a foundation for the house. I am interested in buying and completing the building but I dont know what to do to ensure that a get a good solid deal. can I havecan inspection of the property before I make an offer to purchase? And are there any laws and regulations that I need to be aware of in such a case.

  117. Refiloe, my book Owner Building in South Africa outlines the full process of buying and building.
    If you want someone to inspect the property you will need to find someone like an architect and pay for a consultation. Unfortunately I don’t know who to suggest. Perhaps the Master Builders Association might have some ideas.

  118. I would like to get into the building industry. Is there any minimum qualification required and which institutions offers such?

  119. Jabu it depends what you want to do. A competent person is one who has a university degree – you would need a Matric exemption. You can read more about this on the SACAP web site. The FET Colleges also have courses in various civil engineering fields, e.g. concrete work, masonry, welding, plumbing etc. and these are pre-matric level. There are also courses for artisans.

  120. High I am willing to know the propriate formular of caculating the sqm on a bulding ,is it by the floor sqm or by bricks that make a sqm,I am an builder I m asking the quetion because I am having a problem with the contractor I have tAken sub-contraction under they caculate the lenght by the weight they don’t consider the height so I m willing to know is this formular is what accepted according to Nhbrc ,or I just get robed please assist me .

  121. Simon unfortunately I have no idea how the NHBRC calculates anything – I suggest you contact them directly. Alternatively you could try the Master Builders Association. It would probably be better to phone them than simply to send an email.

  122. If I have an NHBRC certificate for my house, does that mean that the NHBRC would have checked/inspected that the damp proofing was done on my house?

  123. hi there i bought a house a year ago.. there were lots of defects which was pointed out to the sellers they promised to fix it but a year later nothing has been done. water leakage to bathroom coming out in passage wall. roof leaking which is casuing terrible damp and plaster to fall off. also wooden floors thats broken. please advise

  124. Safia hopefully you got the assurances in writing. However, you’re probably going to need a lawyer to hep you enforce these promises whether in writing or verbal.

  125. Louise, below is what the NHBRC states on its web site. Since damp proofing is a critical element in any house, I would think that they should be checking this in one or more of their inspections.
    Home Inspection
    NHBRC inspections are designed to mitigate building risks for the consumer and to protect against poor workmanship during construction. Depending on the enrolment values of the home, a newly enrolled home can be subject to a minimum of four and a maximum of eight inspections. Where necessary, the NHBRC will provide dispute resolution on site between the builder and consumer. In the situation where the NHBRC inspector identifies a deviation from NHBRC building guidelines, a non-compliance certificate will be issued to the builder.
    The builder will be obligated to rectify such non-compliance within a given timeframe. If the builder is unable or unwilling to rectify it, the NHBRC has the mandate to stop construction and undertake disciplinary action against the builder.

    Complaints and conciliation
    The complaint procedure aims to resolve disputes between housing consumers and builders by ensuring that builders meet their obligations. The NHBRC deals with three types of complaints:
    1. Three month non-compliance period
    Complaints relating to minor structural defect identified within three months of occupation of the home.
    2. One year roof leak period
    Complaints relating to roof leaks identified within one year of occupation of the home.
    3. Five-year major structural defects period
    Complaints relating to major structural defect identified within five years of occupation of the home.”

  126. Hi, What is the point of NHBRC compliance if people can easily register with this institution as a builder but get just about anyone (cheap labour) from the street to do the actual work with the certificate obtained by a construction company. What does NHBRC do about this. Is there a way one can report this when it is observed?

  127. Hi Penny,
    I have just extended my house and the builder is NHBRC registered. The house was enrolled. because the roofing is changing, do I need the new certificate for the house/roof. I have no intention of selling the house. Please advise.

  128. Linda you probably won’t need anything more from the NHBRC – unless it affects the warranty – but to change the roof you will need to amend your plans with the local authority.

  129. Hi penny,

    I am renovating a home involving new foundation work, which will be executed by a registered nhbrc builder. Should I not require a bond for the extension or wish to make use of the protection afforded to me as a consumer, is it possible for me to get an exemption from registering the new home in order to save on the enrollment fee.

    Thanks
    Brett

  130. Sunil Heeramun

    i moved into my house in Decemeber 2010, there has always been dampness on one wall,recently there is water seeping through the walls…its a double storey house so the plumbing pipes are in the walls and concrete. The builder is not assisting, what’s the next step.

  131. The NHBRC has a fraud line that you can contact. However, if the “cheap labour” is properly overseen, there may not be a problem. It depends what they are doing – e.g. digging trenches and mixing concrete under instruction could be fine. Bricklayers and plasterers on the other hand must be properly trained.

  132. If the house was new in 2010 and it was built legally (i.e. by an NHBRC registered builder) and this turns out to be a major structural issue, then you will still be covered by the NHBRC’s 5-year warranty. So try the NHBRC first if this is the case. Otherwise you will probably have to get someone to open the wall to find out what is causing the problem. If it is a burst pipe (which from your description seems likely), you will need to employ a qualified, registered plumber to rectify the problem.

  133. Brett renovations do not need to be registered with the NHBRC – only new houses.

  134. I have a property of 1980 m square. How many square m can be built on the property

  135. Hi Penny,
    I bought a stand in a game reserve in the Limpopo Province 2 years ago. I have Title Deeds for the 2 ha Stand. I had plans drawn up and started to build a house on the stand, in January, using a local builder.
    The house structure is complete and the finishing has started.
    Out of the blue an inspector, from the NHBRC arrived on site and said what I was doing is ilegal and must stop immediatly. I am an owner builder. I am also financing the project myself and when complete intend to live their permanentely.
    Before that I had never heard of the NHBRC and that I should first acquire their permission before proceeding.
    He asked me to complete a form, to test my kwowledge of building, which I passed with 85%.
    He said that I must stop until he returns with how to proceed further. This he said could take up to 90 days.
    He also siad that I would have to register with the NHDRC as a builder, which will cost R50,000.
    His bussiness card which hwe gave me looks legitimate.
    Whats going on?
    Is this correct?
    What do I do now?
    Thanks
    Chris

  136. Hi Penny

    Is there a calculation on a JBCC contract to work out what daily penalties would be where the home builder fails to deliver within agreed date?

    Thanks
    Espri

  137. Len it depends where the property is an what the zoning regulations state. I suggest you contact your local authority for this information.

  138. Espri I would assume that it would depend on the specific contract. This needs to be agreed in advance.

  139. Hi Penny,

    I am building a new home myself with the assistance of subcontracts and a project manager.

    Do I need to register the home with the NHBRC and do I need to register myself ?

    If I need to register myself how do I do so without references ?

  140. Doug you need to apply for an exemption from the NHBRC – from registration.

  141. hi
    i want to renew my nhbrc so i want some questions which are asked in the test

  142. Hi Siphosethu, Hi, We do not do registrations, you have to go to the NHBRC here is the link: http://www.nhbrc.org

  143. Hi Penny,

    Our house was completed in 2007. We’ve noticed recently that the wallcladding has completely seperated from the wall & is looking dangerously close to collapsing completely. This is an obvious hazard to us.
    I suppose the NHBRC warranty won’t cover this (older than 5 Years, not a retaining wall), but we still feel it’s due to shoddy workmanship. Any suggestions would be appreciated!

  144. mpho Ramolahloane

    How to make concrete bricks & blocks

  145. Hi Mpho, Please go to our other site Owner Building and go to the “Document Downloads“page and scroll to this item “How To Make Concrete Bricks and Blocks” I’m sure this is what you are looking for.

  146. I am part building as I do not have the money to finish building the whole house. I am building in stages, using casual labour. I do not intend to sell the house at all, but will live in it for many years. The added cost of the Nhbrc registration too much for me. H
    Do I need to register? Am I able and How do I apply for an exemption?

  147. Hi Penny,

    My neighbour has built an addition onto his house, this has been built on top of our shared boundary wall, my question, is this legal and what recourse can I take.

    Thanks

  148. That sounds a bit dicey David. First of all he needs plans because it is doubtful that the wall foundations will be adequate to take the weight of an addition. Secondly, you need to establish who owns the wall. If it is a common wall (i.e. not owned by either one of you) he cannot do anything to the wall without your consent. If it is your wall then he is going to have to demolish whatever he has built unless you give him permissions AND the council approves plans. Contact the planning department of your local authority/council and ask them to send a building inspector to investigate.

  149. Contact the NHBRC they will tell you what to do.

  150. Who is responsible for paying the NHBRC fees? The housing consumer or the home builder?? Can this responsibility ever be varied?

  151. Hi Doug
    You will have to apply for owner builder exemption but if you have already started with construction, the NHBRC will NOT grant you exemption but will insist that you register as a builder and then submit late enrolment documents and provided financial guarantees.
    Please contact me via my website so that I can see how I can assist you with this if you want me to.
    http://www.simplifiedadmin.co.za/

  152. Hi Penny,
    My house is in the process of being built. It is now bricked up to roof level but while walking around it I noticed that some of the metal “bow ties” (have no idea how else to describe them) used between some of the brick courses are protruding the exterior wall. Will these not start to cause problems when they start to rust? And is this NHBRC compliant?
    Many thanks…
    Nigel.

  153. Whendoesthecertificatebecomevalidandwhendoesitend
    if you started building in April 2009 and occupancy certificate issued November 2009 when is the NHRBC certificate valid until is it to April 2014 or November 2014

  154. Hi Priscilla, The NHBRC Warranty starts from the moment the Occupation Certificate is issued and is for 5 years.

  155. We build this house and is been enrolled and the initial builder was chucked out for not playing his part as agreed hence we didn’t deregister him and continued with some couple within his team that we found easy and understandable to work with till we finish and the house is close to complete besides removing the previous builder is it within legal to appoint register this guy as he managed to get certificate even after the house was this far pls advice

  156. Hello
    I would like to know if I am building a ancilliary granny flat, as an addition to my home, do I need to have the building registered with the NHBRC?

  157. Hi ek wag nog op n antwoord, ons weet ni meer wat om te doen.

  158. Is dru walling allowed in a bathroom

  159. karel Mchunu

    Hi am Karel I have a construction company and I need help to get registered with NHBRC

  160. Hi Karel, Then you have to contact the NHBRC directly here: http://www.nhbrc.org/index.php/contacts

  161. Will it cost me anything to register my new cottage with the NBHRC?

  162. I will be owner building a new house using sub contactors. Do I have to register with theNHBRC. Please advise
    Thanks
    Ruth

  163. You will have to apply for an exemption with the NHBRC if you are owner building your own house. You can read more in these two posts: owner-builder-requirements-nhbrc and be-your-own-project-manager

  164. Yes, if you have a registered contractor building a new house for you then you have fees that have to be paid. Read more here: nhbrc-fees

  165. The home owner/consumer is the one ultimately responsible for the fees as this is the owners guarantee against any problems at a later stage. If the builder/contractor pays the fees then they will just recover this cost from within the building quote from the owner at the end of the day.

  166. Yes he is quite correct. You do not say if you had the plans approved before you started building which, by law, you have to do. Unfortunately ignorance of the law is not a defence and you are guilty of breaking the law. The person, and I hope he/she was registered, who drew up your plans should have given you better advice as to what you needed to do. At the end of the day this might cost quite a bit of extra money. What should have happened was that a) you would have had to noinate a competent person to be in charge of the build; b) use a builder who was registered with the NHBRC – if your builder is not registered he is working illegally and you could take action against him (the NHBRC ought to be doing that in any case); and c) If you decided to owner-build, you needed to apply for an exemption from the NHBRC. This is FREE!

  167. I don’t think that the NHBRC would have covered this anyway as it does not sound as though it is structural damage. You can try your insurance company and see if they will repair this if not then you might have to fix it yourselves before someone gets injured.

  168. Hi, I cant seem to find help. Where does one complain about terrible workmanship? I bought a new house that was built but the paint is already peeling, walls are cracked and roof not even sealed off properly. house is not even a year old. please could someone point me in the right direction.

  169. If you bought a new house then you should have put in a snag list with the NHBRC. You can still put in a complaint but the NHBRC warranty mainly covers structural faults and not finishes. You can try and contact the developer and claim from them but I am not sure how much success you will have.

  170. Yes dry walling is allowed in a bathroom but must be sealed with the correct waterproof sealants and coatings.

  171. A.M.A. Motshudi

    How can I register my house with NHBRC,it was not when it was build.

  172. You need to contact the NHBRC directly and ask them, their number is 0800 200 824, or you can email them at thenhbrc@nhbrc.org.za or you can visit the website: nhbrc.org.za

  173. Jack Burgess

    Hi, Can you please tell me if i use Knauf Wallboard to replace my existing ceiling is it compliant with NHBRC requirements. This is the information about the board that is available to me. Knauf Wallboard . Board Type DIN 18180. Reaction to fire DIN EN 13501-1 The board will be bought from UBS (Unlimited Building Supplies)
    Thank you.
    Jack

  174. e. sjouerman

    I am paid up member of nhbrc. despite some 8 repeated requests for a new certificate and confirmation that everything is in order I have received no response at all ever.
    I have phoned Cape Town 021 9139210 but get either no response or when I talk to the lady in question I get a promise that she will respond which is simply not done or yet another request that I send proof of payment again (done twice now). How utterly pathetic! Can you help?

  175. How long is an enrollment process..?

  176. You need to contact the NHBRC directly and ask them, their number is 0800 200 824, or you can email them at thenhbrc@nhbrc.org.za or you can visit the website: http://www.nhbrc.org.za/

  177. They are also called wall-ties or butterfly ties and so long as the do not protrude that much so as to interfere with the plaster coating that will be put on then you should be fine. Wall ties are part of the regulations and are mentioned in our post here: buildingwalls

  178. Hi
    Do i have to have an engineering qualification to be registered as a builder with NHBRC? i have a company and would like to register with the NHBRC but i have a Bcom

  179. Wendy Petersen

    Good day

    We have our plans approved by the municipality but require the NHBRC certificate now. What is the lead time to get this certificate, how many days?
    it is quite urgent so is there possibility that this can be done faster?

    Regards

  180. .bongane William sithathu

    my house is being built, but there are no inspections in the process. I suspect that the bricks used are rejects and there are many regulations which are flawed. my house is enrolled with nhbrc.my bond is with fnb for Mr&Mrs sithathu on potion 53 erf 10341 ermelo extension 18. please help.

  181. You must contact the NHBRC immediately and report this here: lodge-complaint You must also contact your FNB branch that gave you the bond and demand that they send an inspector out to site immediately.

  182. I started extending my house and the main contractor disappeared with my money and I continued with his workers and there were no inspections done until the end. if I call the inspectors now, can they demolish my house if they cannot pass it. The construction is complete now and the house is ready for inhabitation. What is the worst I can expect?

  183. It sounds as if you did not use a registered builder so now you are stuck with a situation that could cost you a lot of money, in fact more than you thought you would save. When the “builder” disappeared you should have contacted the council inspectors and asked their advice regarding inspections. You will have to contact the council building inspectors anyway to get your occupation certificate so ask them how you can solve this problem.

  184. You need to contact the NHBRC.

  185. You need to have a building-related qualification – I don’t think a BComm will cut it.

  186. Unfortunately not really – other than phoning for you. Agreed – they are pathetic!

  187. The compliance that is relevant is SABS. Contact the nearest SABS office to check.

  188. How can I get hold of the legislated tarriffs for house plans and How do I know if an architect is registered with NHBRC.

  189. Architects do not have to be registered with the NHBRC. They must be registered with an organisation such as the SAIA (South African Institute of Architects) Contact them for registration details and for the fees.

  190. Halo tell me what must I do our municipal do not have a building inspector but. I submitted a building plan in October 2013 but my plan is send in October 2014 to civil engineers and they approve the plans ,now tell me can it be done in that manner but there is of the other people’s plan that were send a mouth after my plan and the guy that approve the plans on that time but my plan has to be laid before the council for approval and in that time I think it is November or December they get a new municipal manager and then they took my plan to the municipal manager and my plan do just have problem and can not be approve.i am now gat fol Of that and I want to start building please just advice me on that .

  191. According the building regulations, what constitutes a second kitchen? I wish to install a 2nd kitchen on a property – it will have a hob, prep bowl and a connection for a dishwasher. Will that be allowed and are plans required?

  192. Hi Dirri, You do not say where you are & you do not say if your plans were drawn up by an “competent person” ie an architect or qualified drafts person or engineer. That your plans had to go to so many engineers and councils and managers it would seem that you did not use a professional to do your plans and that is maybe why. If you had used a professional then you should not have had all the hassles.

  193. hi
    i have a contractor that is busy building my house and they asked me to give them R5000 for house registration and they said it is refundable,how true is that?

  194. Mike Freeman

    where can I read the posts owner-builder-requirements-nhbrc and be-your-own-project-manager ?

  195. No idea Cath. Builders often force their clients to pay the NHBRC house registration – it really depends on the contract you have signed with your builder. If he says it is refundable, be sure you have this in writing.

  196. Anything that involves plumbing requires plans – and a qualified registered plumber needs to take responsibility for the work.

  197. No idea what your question is Alida?

  198. No you don’t. It’s a bit of a loophole from what I can tell. We are though going to investigate this in more detail – so watch this space.

  199. I don’t understand your question Steve. Who chucked out your builder? You are not in a position to deregister him – the NHBRC would do this. If you continued to use his workers then you are using illegal builders.

  200. Hi a NHBRC inspector in the midvaal area told me that we can not plaster more than 10m2 per day.
    Is this true?

  201. I did build a house and the builder is well known in the area for building. I never heard of NHBRC. I am not sure if he knows about that too. Now that the building is complete and occuppied can I call upon inspectors to do inspections? How do I contact them

  202. I am sitting with a problem the house is new with multiple cracks, builder does not want to build retaining wall what do I do with this case do I report the builder because he is registered with NHBRC and now he wants me to pay separate for the retaining wall

  203. Your first question should be. According to what regulation or standard? My response is that this sounds like absolute nonsense. If you employ 10 plasterers they can complete as much as they are physically able to – provided they use materials that comply with the standards and their workmanship is good.

  204. Contact the NHBRC urgently.

  205. If he is not registered with the NHBRC then they won’t do any inspections. Here are the contact numbers for the NHBRC.

  206. Hi Penny,

    I live in a newly built sectional title complex, the oldest unit is 3 years old. We have had issues with the painting and waterproofing and had a professional come in to do a report and inspection. This report revealed various issues but the main structural issue being the waterproofing. Can we lodge a claim with the NHBRC as a complex of home owners or does it have to be done on an individual basis, bearing in mind that the common areas are also affected. Thanks

  207. Ons wi n Spek huis bou om te verkoop.Ons wil n bouer gebruik wat nie meer geristreer is nie.Wat staan ons te doen en wat is die kostes en kontak persoon.Dankie.HjW .

  208. Hullo Meneer, Did gebou en planne moet eers “approval” van die NHBRC gekry word. U ka nog meer lees hieroor hier: About the NHBRC en op hulle sé website: NHBRC Eindelik dis teen die wet om ‘n ongeregistreered bouer te gebruik Asb. lees die artikel hier: Did-you-know-the-nhbrc-can-send-you-to-jail

  209. Hi Rex, I would contact the NHBRC directly and ask them if you could bring a class action (make a joint claim) or do they view the complex as individual units. Once you have this info then you can proceed. Contact them here: NHBRC-Contact

  210. Priscilla Mongale

    Morning, I would like to know where must a person register her complaint against NHBRC if she feels dissatisfied with the way her complaints are handled by this office. I have been communicating with Kimberley and Bloemfontein offices and none of these offices are attending to my problem. My house has a lot of structural defects and I am frustrated. Please give guidance on what steps to follow now.

  211. Hi Priscilla, Try getting hold of the head office here: nhbrc

  212. I would like to know what the standard regulation plumbing requirements is for a builder with a registered NHBRC number. For instance: is it standard regulation to build a section of a kitchen without plumbing and drainage

  213. Hi! When someone enrols a new house at the NHBRC they calculate your fee on the cost of the erf plus the cost of the building. However only the building is covered for structural damage. Why??? If I buy a big piece of land and it cost me R10m and I construct a small house of R100 000 on it their risk is surely MUCH lower when it is the other way round!! So why must the cost of the erf also be in the calculated amount?? They do not cover it!!

  214. Dumisane Mahlangu

    Hi i bought a house in 2013 and i moved in 2014,new developments at Klarinet Emalahleni (Witbank) after sometimes living in that house it develops defects(cracks) five to six of cracks in the wall.So i consult the developers and they told me tha they don’t rectify cracks.please help .

  215. Hi,

    Do the NHBRC conduct a final inspection on a newly built house. (Builder is registered with the NHBRC)

  216. First of all they would need to be registered with the NHBRC if they were building legally – in which case there should be an NHBRC warranty. So contact the NHBRC urgently. If they are not members then you still need to report them to the NHBRC because this would be fraud.

  217. No idea Hayley. Please contact the NHBRC and ask them.

  218. What is the liability period for a contractor to repair the two different cracks: settlement and structural

  219. If you belong to the NHBRC and they are involved, they will advise. Otherwise it depends on your contract with the owner of the house.

  220. That is the general idea. If they don’t then contact them to see why they haven’t. It’s in your interests ultimately.

  221. John, the ways of the NHBRC are weird and not very wonderful.

  222. Hi, I purchased a house which the neighbour’s buildings is build on the boundary line and the windows open into my property. What can I do?
    Await your reply
    Hannes

  223. ofentse Ntwayagae

    Goodday sir/madam
    What should i do if my builder is not registered with NHRBC. and can i ask NHRBC to come inspect it even if it is not registered.

    Thank you

  224. If your builder isn’t registered then he is building fraudulently and you should report him to the NHBRC. And no they will not do inspections. Both the builder and the house being built need to be registered with them.

  225. If the building was already there when you bought your house there’s probably nothing you can do. You can ask the local authority for advice though.

  226. Rudi Dorfling

    Probably illegal, it is irrelevant if it was there or not. there are building lines which needs to be followed. If it is a illegal structure time doesn’t make it legal. report them and get it broken down.

    There is also laws protecting privacy etc.

    RD

  227. I want to buy a house but the estate agent informed me the house is bot registered by the NHBRC. Can something be done in this instance to get the house registered?

  228. Hallo.

    What are the steps to take for a builder to register with NHBRC.

    Thanks,

    Danny

  229. Good day,

    I have been informed that a builder should only be registered if he construct new buildings or do extentions to buildings and that it is not necessary if the contractor only does building repairs.

    Is the replacement of a roof beam or the installation of an extra beam, seen as building repairs?

  230. Three years ago when my builder build my house he was not registerd with the NHBRC. But he is now registerd. Problems which are arising now is as follow my foundation slab is only 100mm thick not 300 mm as on the plans. My wals are cracking because of tile roof support .the one beam snapped. When i had him here to look at it he said it was only a plaster crack. Can i stil lodged a complant with the NHBRC.

  231. As a registered builder, I submitted all.relevent documents to the nhbrc for enrolment and paid to thr nhbrc the amount rquired before building. However, I did not manage to pick certificate from the nhbrc, but I called them, and was verbally given the go ahead.(now difficult to prove). The nhbrc wants to clasify our building as a late enrolment with possile fine approx R300k. How do I go about this as I feel the lacking is with the nhbrc for not coming to inspect at the time of submition. May I also mention that the construction so far is at window level ground floor. Waiting reply.

  232. If you paid for enrolment you must have proof of when this was done. You should also be able to prove when you started building. If you paid for enrolment prior to starting the build how can they fine you for late enrolment? You might need a lawyer!

  233. If your builder wasn’t registered in the time your house wasn’t enrolled – and so you have no recourse to the NHBRC.

  234. Only contractors building new houses need to be registered with the NHBRC. Replacement of roof beams would be repairs/maintenance.

  235. Please contact the NHBRC Danny

  236. Not once it is built. If it was owner built it shouldn’t be an issue. It also depends what your bank needs if you are raising a bond.

  237. I wish to become a registered builder. Are there any specific courses i must do before i apply for registration? Which institutions would you recommend? thanks in advance for the answer

  238. Hi Penny,

    What are ‘normal working hours’ ?

    May work be carried out on a public holiday?

  239. Hi Jim, You can read the Regulations Part F here: http://sans10400.co.za/site-operations/

  240. Hi

    I want to add a garage and a room in my house, should I get the NHBRC to do the inspections.

    regards
    ds

  241. Hi,
    we bought a house which was not fully completed. the builders finished it and now its giving me problems with the walls and tiles cracking, the sealing separating from the walls. I called the builders and it seems they just put silicon on the cracks. we living in the house for 1 and a half year.

    what should I do, please help

  242. Hi Sydney, The NHBRC ONLY deals with new houses not with additions or alterations. That is down to your local authority planning department.

  243. I am building with my money and I am not planning to sell but the inspector from nhbrc has stop the construction

  244. please, I need advice, my friend has a hectare plot in Nelspruit and gave us permission to build a house , which would be a second dwelling on the plot, what are the regulations with regards to this and what needs and must be done to protect all parties involved

  245. Good day.

    my house was newly built with nhbrc registered contractor and it was enrolled.

    I’ve moved in recently and within 3 weeks I noted that the floor tiles are badly done, to an extent that a all chairs’ feet don’t touch floor. raised the issue with contractor, it was attended to not satisfaction and he declared it done and complete. I’m not satisfied and his not willing to redo the whole floor. can the NHBRC intervene?

  246. Robert Crawford

    Hi,

    I’m a trustee on a new Body Corporate.
    The building quality in out complex is on shocking side.
    Is it possible to get the NHBRC involved?
    The developer has said to us that they offer zero warranty on their building.
    In less that a yer, we are already starting to develop a serious damp problem, and have uncovered many shortcuts which were taken during the building phase, and are going to turn into major long term issues.

    Thanks
    Rob

  247. Helo,
    i have bought a house just over a year ago from the Builder.
    the house has quite a bit of waterdamage which is really concerning. do i contact the builder or NHBCR for inspeciton?
    the house plans approved for building had 2 doors added which the builder only put windows in, is this allowed? or can i get builder to replace window’s with doors as per approved plans?
    thank you

  248. The NHBRC is obliged to intervene. They have a warranty scheme!

  249. All building contractors must be registered with the NHBRC and all houses must be enrolled. The only exception is an owner builder who has applied and been granted an exemption.

  250. If this is a newish building then yes you can. The builder should have been registered with the NHBRC as should all the houses in the complex. This means they will be covered by the standard NHBRC warranty. If the builder wasn’t registered, he built illegally and the developer will be implicated. In that case the NHBRC should take action as well. The NHBRC warranty is valid for five years I think.

  251. Contact the NHBRC and the builder.

  252. The house will need to be built according to the building regulations and you will need approved plans. The council will have to give permission for a second dwelling. You will have to come to an agreement with your friend in terms of ownership via a separate contract or legal agreement.

  253. The house should have been built by an NHBRC-registered builder and the house should have been enrolled. If this was done then you will be covered by the NHBRC warranty. If not, the building is illegal!

  254. Please contact the NHBRC – we are not affiliated with them in any way.

  255. Neville Hart

    Must a building contractor be registered to do interior non structural work as in a bathroom renevation

  256. Neville, All interior structural work by law is required to have plans submitted and approved before building starts and it is law that any person/business that operates as a “builder” must be registered and approved by one of the associations.

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