Essential Information

Does my own house insurance cover me if I get a bathroom renovation done?

Probably not. Typically a home owners insurance is based on regular day to day use of the home, however a renovation is an additional event that may fall outside your present agreement..It is best to contact your insurance company to check.

​Does a renovator or tradesman need to be insured?

No they do not. Letting someone into your house that is not insured could leave you at great risk of liability for example, damage, injury compensation and workers compensation and is strongly not recommended. A builder, plumber, painter and electrician have to be insured to be licensed and are required to be licensed by law.

If you are paying a renovator $20,000 in total for a bathroom renovation?

If you are paying a renovator $20,000 in total then it is compulsary to take out home indemnity insurance. Home indemnity insurance can only be taken out by an owner builder or a registered builder. The reason home indemnity insurance is taken out is to protect the home owner or any subsequent owner for faulty, unsatisfactory or incomplete building work and loss of deposit should the builder die, disappear or become insolvent within 6 years from the completion of the renovation.
Contracts are they compulsary?

Any bathroom renovation valued over $7,500 needs to have a contract by law between the client and the contractor. The contract must be in writing, contain all terms and conditions of the agreement and must be dated and signed by both parties.
Deposit by law cannot exceed 6.5% of the total price prior to the commencement of work.
Progress payments must be genuine for work already performed or materials already supplied.

Can I remove or relocate a wall, window or door?

You can if you get council approval and the proper building permits.To get approval only an owner builder or registered builder can do this. You can replace an existing window and you can make it smaller but you cannot make it bigger or relocate it without permission. You can alter a door to make it open the opposite way but you cannot remove or alter the existing door frame without permission. Most people think you can move or relocate a wall that is not load bearing but you cannot you must obtain permission. Moving a wall thats not load bearing can still undermine the structural integrity of your roof. The council usually find out from the existing house plans as all changes will be noted on there paperwork with plans submitted and approved. If your council gives you verbal permission to make an alteration you must get it in writing.

What if I do the renovation myself or contract it out?

You can do this but doing so you must adhere to the australian building code and Australian standards as the owner builder you become responsible for the work you are undertaking. It becomes your responsibility to ensure that any contractor engaged is appropriatley licensed. It is highly recommended that you contact your insurance company and take out the required insurance to protect you from liabilities such as damage, injury compensation and workers compensation. You also have to warrant to a subsequent owner that the works are fit for their purpose.

Why do I have to use a licensed plumber?

You must always use a licensed plumber. Only a plumber who holds a licence issued by the Plumbers Registration Board, can legally carry out water supply, sanitary and drainage plumbing works in Western Australia. Unlicensed plumbing is prohibited due to the risks to public health, safety and the environment. You can check if your plumber is licensed at the WA Department of Commerce website you will need their business name, actual name or license number to do this.

Why do I have to use a licensed electrician?

You must always use a licensed electrician. It is an offence to carry out your own electrical works if you are not a licensed electrician. There are also regulations about light switches and power points being a required distance from baths, vanities and showers. You can check if your electrician is licensed at the WA Department of Commerce website you will need their business name, actual name or license number to do this.