Information for Home Owners
If you are building or rebuilding a home in the RMWB, mandatory requirements for disclosure of builder information have recently come into force. The information collected under these requirements will be published online in the RMWB Builder Registry to help you make informed decisions as you move forward with your construction project.
How does the disclosure requirements help me?
Entering into an agreement for the purchase or construction of a new home, whether for the first time or in response to a disaster such as the wildfires in the RMWB, is one of the most important decisions an individual or family will make. The Government of Alberta’s new builder information disclosure requirements will help you with a builder's history so that you can make a more informed decision.
What information do builders need to provide?
Builders who intend to construct homes in the RMWB are now required to disclose information in the form of a declaration which is signed and witnessed by a Commissioner of Oaths or Notary Public. The declaration includes a statement indicating their understanding of government expectations (e.g., that they must follow applicable legislation and building codes), and requires the builders to provide construction related details such as:
- residential construction history
- financial indicators
- outstanding fines or orders
The declaration is published for public review on the RMWB Builder Registry.
Builders who have submitted incomplete or incorrect information may not be able to obtain a building permit.
Will the information submitted by a builder be verified? Is the government evaluating builders?
The information submitted in the declaration is subject only to a review for completeness and will be published online as provided. Once posted, if new information becomes available further review may be completed. Listing a builder on the RMWB Builder Registry is not a statement about the builder's reliability and quality. Consumers are recommended to do their own due diligence. Home buyers are recommended to do their own due diligence to determine any changes to the builder's information, beyond the date of publication. The declarations are provided as a resource for consumers and are not vetted or endorsed by Municipal Affairs. The declarations are intended to provide general information only. The declarations should not be substituted for legal advice.
Information deemed to be false or superfluous (i.e., marketing material) may result in a rejected registration. Builders from whom a declaration and questionnaire have not been received will not be able to register new homes and will not be able to obtain building permits.
Are builders still required to provide a home warranty?
Yes. Mandatory warranty requirements, as stipulated in the New Home Buyer Protection Act, remain applicable.
How do I use the information provided?
The RMWB Builder Registry is an alphabetical listing of residential builders that have expressed interest in building new homes in the RMWB. Each builder’s name is linked to a downloadable PDF of the most recent builder Declaration received by the NHBPO from that builder.
Review the content provided. Definitions are included in the questionnaire to help you understand the details that have been provided.
Consumers can use the builder information to assess options and make more informed decisions when selecting a builder to reconstruct their home. The declarations are provided as a resource for consumers and are not vetted or endorsed by Municipal Affairs. The declarations are intended to provide general information only. The Declarations should not be substituted for legal advice.
As part of the process, information deemed to be personal or superfluous (i.e., marketing material) may be removed from disclosure forms prior to online publication.
Consider the information carefully as you determine what is important for YOU to have in a builder.
Do you have information on what to include in a contract with a builder?
Contracts to build or rebuild homes are legal documents. You should work with a legal representative to review your contract and to give consideration to any additional items you may want to have contractually included.
Your insurance company will be able to work with you to provide information about how your builder should be paid for their work. Processes may vary between companies.
It is recommended that before hiring a builder you should:
- Contact the local Better Business Bureau (BBB) to check their reliability reports;
- Confirm licenses (i.e., that the builder if required, has a valid pre-paid contractor licence: Service Alberta - Find if a business is licenced);
- Check references;
- Obtain written estimates; and
- Insist on a written contract.
What if I want to build my own home?
The New Home Buyer Protection Act contains provisions that allow individuals wishing to build their own homes to apply for an exemption from the requirement to purchase new home warranty. The implications of choosing this option should be carefully considered before submitting an application for exemption. To learn more visit, the Information for Owner Builder page. New Home Buyer Protection Office Compliance Officers can assist you in deciding if applying for an owner builder exemption is an appropriate option. To speak with a Compliance Officer, please contact the New Home Buyer Protection Office at 1-866-421-6929 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do I need to complete a declaration if I'm building my own home?
Homeowners that are intending to build with warranty are required to complete a Residential Builder Declaration form. The reason for this is to protect the subsequent owners in the event that the house is sold within the 10-year warranty protection period.
If homeowners are submitting an application for authorization to build without warranty, they DO NOT need to submit a Residential Builder Declaration form.
I have additional questions, who can I call?
New Home Buyer Protection Office has prepared the below tip sheets to help homeowners understand the Residential Builder Declaration and to provide guidance in choosing and working with a builder.
- About the Residential Builder Declaration
- Hiring a Builder
- Contract Considerations
- Working with Builders
For additional information about consumer protection contact Service Alberta, Customer Contact Centre.