The Solution to the Strata Living Crisis in NSW
Our principal solicitor, Jessica Rippon, has recently had her thesis “Closing the Gap: Decennial Liability Insurance – The Solution to the Strata Living Crisis in New South Wales” published in the Building and Construction Law Journal.
In her article, Ms Rippon believes there is a strata living crisis in New South Wales (NSW) due to the lack of consumer protection in strata housing against defective building, as evidenced by the Mascot and Opal Towers evacuations. The article explores the evolution of the NSW building insurance scheme and focuses on the State Government’s current and past approach in insurance exemption for residential strata developments over three storeys. Ms Rippon also looked at the recent government reforms in building regulations and certification system in relation to multi-storey developments, and opines that these reforms, albeit being in the right direction, is not an effective solution to the strata living crisis.
Ms Rippon emphasised the need for a holistic approach through the implementation of decennial liability insurance in New South Wales, and made references to other countries that has implemented similar regimes. Further, Ms Rippon discussed how existing NSW laws and regulations have to change in order to adopt a decennial insurance model. A decennial liability insurance model would protect those living in strata developments and simultaneously protect contractors from bankruptcy when major building defects in a high-rise development is discovered.