9 Benefits of Getting a Building Contract Reviewed by a Lawyer

September 5, 2022    propertylawyersperthwide
9 Benefits of Getting a Building Contract Reviewed by a Lawyer

Whether extending, renovating, or building a home, these are considered the second largest investment an individual can make after purchasing their home or a piece of land. By reviewing the domestic building contract, issues can be identified and solved in this contract that can save homeowners tons of money and stress in the future.


Many disputes can occur between builders and homeowners; these can be avoided by reviewing the contract before signing. It is recommended that you seek legal advice from building contract lawyers in perth to confirm the building contract terms. In this blog, you will learn the benefits of getting your building contract reviewed by a lawyer.

What Happens When a Homeowner Does Not Receive Legal Advice Before Signing?

If you are a homeowner and did not receive legal advice before signing, there will be a cooling-off period of five days from the date the contract is signed. There will be no cooling-off period if you have received legal advice from a lawyer before signing.

Is There a Quality Domestic Building Contract?

Domestic building contracts have to be compliant and meet the requirements of the Domestic Building Contracts Act 1995. The builders in Australia can use a standard building contract template prepared by an industry association like the Housing Industry Association, Association of Victoria, and much more or use their template.


The Australian builders can amend any contract in a way that does not favor the homeowners. You need to contact a reputable lawyer to review both contract types; this can ensure that the special conditions and provisions do not restrict your right under the contract or impose unfair terms that are prohibited.


Do You Need a Written Domestic Building Contract?

As per the DBC Act, a major domestic building contract agreement needs to be in writing for any work that is more than $10,000.00. Even if the work is less than the stated value, there needs to be a written contract that will set out the terms and conditions of the work.

Who Can Enter into a Domestic Building Contract?

Only a registered builder can enter a major domestic building contract and take out the building insurance. Building insurance is needed for work that is more than $16,000.00 and can protect the homeowner if something happens to the builder.

What Are the Important Aspects of a Domestic Building Contract?

There are many important aspects of a domestic building contract and various information that you need to consider. Some of the essential aspects are as follows:

  • Is the builder registered?
  • What is the process of making changes to plans or specifications?
  • Are you able to visit the building site?
  • What are the progress payments that you must pay to the builder?
  • Are there extra fees that you need to pay under the contract?
  • What damages will you and your builder be responsible for, and when?
  •  Are the plans and specifications that are a part of the contract the same plans and specifications you agreed to?
  • What is the starting date, and what delays are allowed under the building c contract?
  • Who will be responsible for receiving and paying for the building and planning permit?
  • What are the main costs and provisional costs in the contract?

Why Does a Domestic Building Contract Need to be Reviewed by a Lawyer?

Some of the reasons why experts recommend a domestic building contract to be reviewed by property contract lawyers are as follows:

1. It is a standard building contract

Many builders use ‘standard’ building contracts prepared by industry bodies like Masters Builders Australia or Housing Industry Association. These contracts are usually drafted to help create a balance between the consumer and the builder.


These contracts must have important terms and conditions following the relevant legislation in each jurisdiction. But a contract with an MBA or HIA logo may give a false security sense to the homeowner. Eventually, the builder created the contract and may have revised the terms to the homeowner’s affliction.

2. Protecting your rights and interests

The builders in Australia need to be properly licensed and insured to carry out important domestic building work, and a building contractor needs to have provisions that follow the relevant legislation. A lawyer can conduct proper checks to ensure that the builder is authorized to undertake the work.


They can also ensure that relevant insurance safeguards you if something unfortunate happens to the builder. When your contract is reviewed, you will know about your consumer and statutory rights and ensure that the provisions do not affect any of the rights.


For instance, building contract agreements might attempt a homeowner to make progress payments outside of the legally permitted schedules. The parties need to be properly described, and if your builder is a corporate body, you must ensure that they are properly authorized to act on behalf of the company.

3. To understand the allocation of responsibilities and risks

Similar to the other contracts, a domestic building contract needs to set out every party’s responsibilities, rights, and obligations. The contract must properly reflect the things negotiated and agreed upon between a builder and the homeowner.


The best lawyers can explain who is responsible for what and ensure that the main provisions are not overlooked. For instance, the builder’s contract needs to include indemnification by the builder for the homeowners regarding claims arising from performed work and conditions that need the builder to insure themselves against risks like a public liability.

4. Everything does not go as per the plan

There may be elements of uncertainty when someone undertakes a building project. Unpredictable events like bad weather, labour/supply shortages, and material and builder solvency issues can cause delays and affect the project.


A building contract needs to deal with all these possibilities and ensure that a homeowner’s rights are protected. It also needs to set out sensible processes for unexpected events. These possible issues might be overlooked, especially when discussing if the benchtops need to be marble or granite.


The best building contract lawyers can help to prevent these matters or issues and ensure that the provisions are there to deal with these unexpected events. The better you understand each party’s rights and obligations, the more equipped you will be to safeguard your position, lessen delay, and prevent loss.

5. Detecting the hidden costs

A building contract needs to include the proper costings for the full project and be as transparent as possible about the potential differences in pricing. The fittings and fixtures need to be set out in a schedule, specified per the make and model, in a manner that can avoid unpredictable extra costs.


Some homeowners might not be aware that, in some circumstances, the home they visited might be a deluxe design and not the standard model. This is why it is important to ensure that the plans and specifications are in order with the expectations. The contract should have clear provisions regarding changes that need to be in writing and signed off by the parties.

6. To provide a proper and in-depth understanding.

Legal language can often confuse people; the best property and contract lawyers have undergone proper schooling that can help them understand the terms of these documents. If you manage contracts without the help of a lawyer, you might find that the necessary conditions are not included, or the critical terms are not understood properly.


When people do not understand a contract, they may incorrectly assume things, leading to later costly dispute resolution methods. The risks can be minimized or avoided when you work with the best lawyers in your area.

7. Even contractual relationships

While using a building contract for formal agreement is normal, you must ensure that none of the parties involved is offended by the terms. A good building contract lawyer can take over the responsibility of drafting a licensing agreement and executing the building contract.


They can separate the parties that are involved in the parties themselves. When you have a lawyer looking after your duties, you can be assured that they will offer a certain level of impartiality that the other parties cannot provide on their own.

8. Filing the correct contracts

Other than a building contract, there may be other contracts you might need to draft for your business, like terms/ conditions, employment agreements, non-disclosure agreements, etc. The best lawyers will not only address the contract at hand but can also advise you on other documents that can provide enhanced protection to your business.

9. Can safeguard you when there is a breach of contract

If you find that you are dealing with a breach of contract at a later time, you can call your lawyer for help. The person who helped you draw up the contract can also be the best resource for you when enforcing it.


There are multiple reasons why people choose to take the help of a lawyer, and you may be at risk if you are not one of them. If you draft your contract without a lawyer, you can still look to associate with one of them to deal with unresolved problems.

Contact Property Lawyers Perth

If you feel that you need to get your building contract reviewed, you can take the help of the best building contract lawyers in your area. Property lawyers Perth is known to provide the best law services to their clients and can provide you with a good team of Property Lawyers in Perth to review your contract.

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