Ongoing shortages of building materials and skilled tradespeople is causing delays and cost increases in the construction industry. The residential construction industry has been particularly hard-hit by these shortages, with some builders estimating wait periods of up to four months for materials and labour necessary for them to commence work. The shortages are due to market forces amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic and are impacting everyone in the supply chain, from suppliers and builders to subcontractors, employees, and consumers.
It is understandable that these delays, additional costs and their flow-on effects can have a significant personal impact. If you feel like you need support, please reach out to organisations that are there to help:
- Mates in Construction (1300 642 111)
- Lifeline (13 11 14)
The Queensland Building & Construction Commission (QBCC) are encouraging affected builders and clients to consider using the Accelerated Builder / Consumer Dispute Framework (ABCD) if mediation has not yet occurred.
The ABCD mediation service is designed to match qualified mediators to those who are experiencing issues with residential building contracts underway due to industry material or labour shortages. The process provides an opportunity for both parties to assess the situation and work towards a realistic solution together. The ABCD mediation service will match applicants with a qualified mediator, to help facilitate a conversation between parties experiencing issues.
The mediation process provides an opportunity for impacted parties to discuss the situation, its impact and work towards a realistic solution together. Applications are free and are subject to the following eligibility requirements:
you must be either a QBCC licensee or property owner
you must be a party to a domestic building contract for a new home or a major renovation over the value of $150,000
work must have commenced on this contract
the dispute you are experiencing must be as a result of industry materials or labour shortages
you must have made an attempt to resolve the dispute between parties prior to applying.
The full Accelerated Builder / Consumer Dispute Framework Policy can be found here.
Prior to engaging in this process, it is recommend that you obtain legal advice to possible outcomes and your position under the contract.