Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Master Build Guarantee?

The Master Build Guarantee is a product that a home owner can obtain from their Registered Master Builder to protect themselves from or against certain events such as loss of deposit, non-completion of the building work, defective workmanship and materials, rot and fungal decay and structural defects. The guarantee is backed by Master Build Services Limited so in the event of the builder being unable or unwilling to perform Master Build Services will, assuming the terms and conditions of the guarantee are met.

It is important to note that the guarantee is not automatic upon hiring a Registered Master Builder – you must complete the guarantee documentation with your builder and pay the required fee and ensure that both are sent through to Master Build Services.

The Term of the Guarantees

Why 10 years?

The Building Act 2004 has a 10 year long stop provision, so it is important to ensure that our Master Build Guarantees are in line with that.  Also public feedback has been very consistent in voicing a requirement for a 10 year guarantee.

Limit of Cover

Why is the cover of the 10 Year Premium Guarantee $1,000,000, the 10 Year Standard $400,000 and the Kiwi $100,000?

We undertook extensive research to find out what consumers expected from this type of product and there was no single answer. Consumers wanted choice in the amount of their cover so we developed a range of guarantees to meet these expectations. The cover for the Premium Guarantee is designed to cover 100% of the replacement cost of building a typical new home in New Zealand, whereas the 10 Year Standard Guarantee and 10 Year Kiwi are an affordable alternative for those homeowners where covering the total contract price is not required or minor addition and alteration works are being undertaken.

Why are there three Guarantees?

There are up to 3 major components to a guarantee:

Cover whilst building for: Loss of deposit; Non-completion and Remedial work required during the build;

Cover after completion of the build for: Workmanship and materials;and

Long term cover for: Structural defect and Rot and fungal decay.

The feedback we obtained from consumer research was quite clear. Not everybody wanted the same thing. Some only wanted the workmanship and materials, structural and rot and fungalcover once the build was completed as they felt they had already researched the builder and would not engage anyone who they believed would be a problem. However, they were still very keen on the workmanship and materials cover as it provided peace of mind and was a positive benefit should they decide to sell the house.  On the other hand some homeowners still wanted cover for Loss of deposit and Non-completion should something happen during the build.  It was through this feedback that we were able to develop our suite of 10 Year Guarantees that are tailored to each individual's needs.

The Building Contract

Master Build Services recommends that anyone who engages a Registered Master Builder to build for them use our standard RBC1-2015 Building Contract, which is available to all of our members.  This contract contains our comprehensive payment schedules along with other valuable protection.  It is important to note that if you are using a different building contract then Master Build Services will require a full copy of this to accompany your Guarantee Application.

Payment Schedules

When entering into a building contract with a Registered Master Builder, Master Build Services recommends that you incorporate a form of payment schedule into your building contract.  Our Staged Payment Schedule and Progress Payment Schedule are examples of this.  They are included in our RBC1 – 2015 Building Contract. These are important as it allows you to keep track of all monies paid and ensures that you only pay for work that has been completed so should something go wrong you have enough money left to complete the build with someone else.

Delays in your Build

Sometimes delays can be inevitable.  They can be caused by anything from the weather, to your imported Italian marble being held up in customs!  But if you have serious concerns about the ability of your builder to finish your build, you should contact Master Build Services to discuss this.  If we feel that there is genuine concern with the delays then this could lead to further action by Master Build Services.  While this does not instantly mean that there is a valid claim against your Guarantee for Non-Completion, we will be able to advise you on where to go from here.

What if things go wrong?

If you think there is a problem with the work, contact Master Build Services before making any further payments to your builder.  The Guarantees won't cover you for any significant defect or incomplete work known to you at the time of final payment, or possession of the dwelling.