Thursday, November 21, 2013

After the Move: Handling Warranty Issues during the First Year

From those first tentative steps towards purchasing a new home in Ottawa, you’ve come a long way! As you unpack your boxes, position your furniture and hang your artwork, you can feel this home becoming your own. You’re probably a little tired – but the exhilaration is enough to keep you going.

Ideally, this feeling is strengthened with the confidence that your Ottawa home has been built to meet both building codes and your own exacting specifications. In most cases, when you’ve chosen your home builder after proper research, and completed a thorough pre-delivery inspection (PDI) as I discussed in my previous blogs, you can rest easy that things are as they should be.

Sometimes, however, items are missed during that initial inspection. When this happens, it’s important for you to understand the proper course of action to take. Ontario’s Tarion Warranty Program is structured to deal with Ottawa homeowner complaints in a very specific manner; in order to take advantage of the program, it’s necessary that you fill out the appropriate forms and meet set deadlines.

Details of the process are outlined in A Guide to Your New Home Warranty, provided by Tarion to all new home buyers. As much as I urge my clients to become familiar with this guide, the truth is that amid the flurry of your Ottawa home search, purchase and move, it can be a lot of information to digest. Here are some major points to remember:

There are one year, two year and seven year warranties that apply to various aspects of your home.

If you discover a problem with your home within the first year of living there, you have two opportunities to file a warranty form. The 30-Day Form must be filed within 30 days of taking possession, while the Year-End Form must be filed within the last 30 days of the first year.

Naturally, it’s in your best interest to submit a report sooner rather than later, so I recommend paying particular attention to construction details during your first couple of weeks of occupancy. As well, some Ottawa homeowners who missed the chance to hire a home inspector during the PDI may choose to do so prior to the end of the year for an added sense of security.

New home ownership isn’t without its responsibilities; but attention to detail now will pay off in the long run. Here’s to a wonderful first year!
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