Consumer Protection: Ensure Your Home Is Warrantied
Searching the Ontario Builder Directory ensures your new home is being built legally and is covered by the provincial warranty program
Most of us do a great deal of research before we make a big purchase. If buying a car, for example, we’ll check out manufacturer websites, read consumer reports on reliability and performance and drop by dealerships to talk about available features, colours, gas mileage, financing and more.
When you’re buying a new home, the Ontario Builder Directory can be a valuable tool for researching your builder.
The Ontario Builder Directory (OBD) allows you to see if your builder or vendor is registered with Tarion and legally permitted to build or sell homes in Ontario. You can also look up their contact information and related companies under which they operate, how many homes they have built and the communities where they build.
You can also see their track record – have they been a recipient or finalist of a Homeowners’ Choice Award (which are determined by homeowner surveys), or has Tarion had to resolve warranty claims on their behalf?
We’re continually looking at ways that we can make the OBD more useful. In 2017, we made it mobile friendly and added a number of new functions, including the ability to search not only by company name but also by company director or officer.
But we didn’t stop there. We recently added another new feature that allows users to search for individual homes by municipal address or lot and plan number, which is useful for those who want to confirm if a home is enrolled with Tarion and eligible for warranty protection.
Search results are updated daily and include:
- Homes that are enrolled;
- Enrolled homes that are under construction but not yet occupied;
- Homes that are currently under warranty;
- The warranty start date and end date for each home currently under warranty.
This new enhancement will not only help those looking to buy a new home, but also others who help with the homebuying process, such as real estate agents and lawyers. It will also go a long way in helping municipal building departments in their efforts to prevent illegal building by allowing them to confirm whether particular homes or addresses in their communities are enrolled in the warranty program.
Buying a new home is a big decision and a big investment. It makes sense to do your research – not only into what type of home you might want but also which company you want to build that home. To check out the Ontario Builder Directory, visit Tarion.com.
Howard Bogach is president and CEO of the Tarion Warranty Corporation.