I have just recently had a question from one of our owner builder students in respect to their rights when it cones to water ingress from an adjoing property.
The law and your rights vary slightly from state to state, but the overall approach is reasonably consistent.
Owner Builders need to be aware that council will only act under local legislation when there is a breach in the building code and the design is such that is creates a nuisance to adjoining properties.
Following is an extract from the Queensland Local Government legisaltion. Basically, where design codes and building laws have been follwed, run off water issues and resultatnt disputes or litigation become a civil matter;
Council can also respond to complaints relating to nuisances and flooding as a result of illegal or incorrectly constructed building and structures.
Water flow problems caused by the natural lay of the land, or from overland flow, are a civil matter. If you have an issue with any of the following, you should first speak to your neighbour:
Disputes resolutionIf you wish to formally manage discussions, you may also consider contacting the Disputes Resolution Centre. The centre offers free advice and mediation services and can be contacted on 07 3239 6007.
I hope this helps our owner builder students to better understand their legal rights and responsibilities in respect to rainwater and groundwater run off issues.
Thanks and Best Reagrds,
The staff at Abacus Training would like to take this opportunity to wish all our Owner Builder Course students (past and present) a very safe and Merry Christmas.
It is a time of great joy for many people but also a time of manic activity on many owner builder work sites.
There are two very important things I want you to consider as we come into this holiday period.
Firstly, we hope our Owner Builder have used their project management and scheduling/planning skills to make certain their owner builder projects continue seamlessly over a time where many suppliers and trade contractors are simply not available.
Everyone needs a break, so I hope you have pre ordered and allowed for about a 3 week lull in availability of some services. This will save frustration and keep your project on track.
If not, relax, please dont stress as it will not achieve much and is simply not good for your or your close ones.
The second and more important thing to consider is site safety.
The holiday season often sees and increase in accidents and incidents on woner builder sites. This is sometimes caused by uninitiated visitors to the site, including family and friends. A second cause is the urgency and rush 'get it done' attitude that tends to creep in over the short break.
You can only do what you can do and the safety of yourself and all those who visit your site must be the number one priority as always.
Think before you act and make certain you and the persons on your site make it home safely to your families at the end of every day.
Once again, merry christmas and have a great New Year, 2017 promises to be very exciting and we guarantee we will be continually improving our course offerings and services to our owner builder students.
Very Best Regards to you and your families,
Rick Heaton and all teh Abacus Training Staff
Scheduling for Owner Builders
Scheduling has two distinct and very different applications in the building industry, and our owner builder students have the opportunity to develop skills in both areas.
Firstly, scheduling as it relates to the development of a timeline, is a skill that is as much an art form as it is a science.
That said, owner builder students should recognise the importance of being able to determine a schedule and to drive or manage their projects effectively and with reference to a detailed schedule.
In our Introduction to Project Management course, we outline the basics of developing a realistic construct schedule for you owner builder project.
Using the blank proforma we provide, it is always recommended that you start by 'blanking out' the non work days such as weekends, public holidays etc. Doing this establishes a realistic and visual presentation of those days available to conduct work on your site. It also provides a small buffer to regain or reschedule lost time particularly in those areas where you might be conducting the works yourself.
Next step is to list each of the tasks you can identify as individually being required to complete the project.
Once this is done, think about the order or sequence that the works will need to be completed and the relationship between each task, trade or supply. This is known as determining the 'dependencies'.
Look for end - start dependencies and start - start dependencies, allocate the time assumptions for each task and develop your critical path (the longest time identified by the schedule using end - start dependencies).
Owner builders will need to seek outside advice in most cases to establish a realistic timeline, so don't be afraid to ask your trades or suppliers for their time estimates for their part of contracted works. Additionally seek to get as much information from them in respect to their availability and anything they can foresee that could potentially disrupt your schedule or delay access to the site for following contractors.
The second type of scheduling that is relevant to owner builder students is the production of lists (Schedules) of various building elements.
Most projects undertaken by an owner builder will require some schedules and may include a Prime Cost Schedule, a Window and Door Schedule, a Bracing Schedule etc. Almost all materials required can be broken down into a schedule, which is an efficient way in which the owner builder can identify, organise and manage aspects of their project.
A well written Specification, will always include a Schedule of Finishes. This identifies and documents the treatment of all finished surfaces and may include painting and staining, tile finishes, floor coverings etc.
Take the time to revise the course notes that discuss Scheduling and participate in the forums and chat groups to share information with you fellow owner builder students.
That is what this blog is designed to do. Together, we can make this a powerful tool for all owner builders.
Rick Heaton is a Building and Construction Industry professional with formal tertiary qualifications in management and training.