BY KEITH LACEY
Buying a new home is the most important investment the average person makes, and the private corporation mandated to keep track of builders is promising to be more accountable than ever to Ontario consumers.
Robert Mitchell, director of government relations, and
Gregory Gee, president and CEO of Tarion Warranty Corp.,
formerly the Ontario New Home Warranty Program, were in Greater
Sudbury recently to talk about changes within their
"We changed our name three years ago and with that came a
mandate to modernize the organization and become more
Tarion operates independent of government intervention, but
are "very much accountable" to the Ministry of Housing, said
Basically, Tarion has two functions. The first is to license
home builders, and this includes builders of single-detached
homes, townhouses and condominiums.
"We make sure all builders have all of the proper
qualifications, financially and technically," he said.
Secondly, Tarion adminsters the warranty which every new
home buyer receives.
The roles and responsibilities of the homeowner, the builder and Tarion are clearly defined in a Homeowner Information Package: A Guide to Your New Home Warranty available through most builders and home building associations.
The 24-page brochure includes information on pre-delivery
inspections, the statutory warranty offered to every buyer and
what's involved in various warranties guaranteed by the
province, he said.
A one-year warranty is offered to ensure all construction is
done in a workmanlike fashion and free from defects in
material, is fit for habitation, constructed in accordance with
the Ontario Building Code and free of any major structural
A two-year warranty is offered in case of water penetration
through the basement or foundation walls; defects in materials,
including windows, doors and caulking; defects in electrical,
plumbing and heating delivery and distribution systems; and
violations of the Ontario Building Code.
A seven-year warranty is offered on all new homes,
guaranteeing any defect in work or materials that results in
the failure of a land-bearing part of the home's structure is
repaired in full. It also protects any defect in work or
materials adversely affecting the use of the building as a
Tarion operates its own call centre which receives in excess of 1,000 calls a day and its website receives 20,000 hits per month. For more information, phone 1-877-982-7466 or visit www.tarion.com/HOME .