Home Building Compensation Fund (HBCF) cover (formerly called ‘Home Warranty Insurance’) is needed if you’re a licensed builder or tradesperson in New South Wales and you’re about to undertake a home building project valued at $20,000 (including GST) or more. As a builder, you are legally required to give proof of HBCF cover to the homeowner or developer you are working for before you start work or ask for a deposit or any other payment.
Failure to take out HBCF cover is an offence under New South Wales law. Cover acts as a protection for the homeowner against financial loss suffered by them (and any subsequent owner, as long as the policy has not been exhausted by a prior claim) when a builder or tradesperson can’t complete contracted work or meet a valid claim for defective or unsatisfactory building work. This can happen when that person:
- becomes insolvent
- has had their licence suspended due to non-compliance with an order by the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal or court to pay the homeowner money. The cover also applies if the builder is trading through a business entity which ceases to exist or becomes insolvent.
It’s important to note that you must provide this Certificate of Insurance to the homeowner or developer before you start work or request a deposit.
When applying for your HBCF certificate, you will be required to state the construction type for your project.
In NSW, builders can also apply for HBCF Certificates of Insurance online. Click below to find out more about the icare HBCF Self-Service Portal.
The HBCF Builder Self-Service Portal is a convenient alternative to applying for your Certificates of Insurance. The HIA Insurance Services team will still need to review and approve your application prior to binding your certificates.
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