Self-build home: Occupy the home and rectify any defects
A meeting should be held to formally handover the completed site for occupation. Keys should be handed over, along with as-built drawings, certificates, warranties and so on.
A procedure should be agreed for reporting any defects.
The defects liability period (or rectification period) is a period set out in construction contracts (often 6 months) during which contractors are still bound by the terms of the contract and can be instructed to make good any defects that become apparent in the works.
The self builder should:
- Keep detailed notes about any defects that appear.
- Decide whether defects are design deficiencies or construction defects.
- Notify the responsible party and arrange access for inspection and rectification.
- At the end of the defects liability period, prepare a schedule listing defects that have not yet been rectified and agree with the contractor the date by which they will be rectified. The contractor must in any event rectify defects within a 'reasonable' time.
- Ensure that all outstanding warranties, instructions and other paperwork has been received.
- Finalise any outstanding party wall matters.
- Arrange final inspections of the works and if satisfied issue a certificate of making good defects.
- Agree the final account.
- Issue the final certificate and make the final payment.
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