Burnaby-New Westminster NewsLeader – June 25, 2008
Re: Fewer than half of leaky condos fixed so far: report
Since only about 20 per cent of victims pass the HPO means-test for a no-interest loan, and there have been 13,226 loans approved, this means more than 66,000 families in B.C. have already been directly affected by builder fraud.
It also means the direct costs to B.C. families for the various types of fixes, many inadequate, have exceeded a staggering $2.3 billion to date; read again, $2.3 billion to date.
In 2000 a building envelope task force was struck by then Coquitlam mayor Jon Kingsbury on the recommendation of the Economic Development Committee to determine the economic impact of leaky condos for that city. Close to $100 million (in 2000 dollars) of repairs required at that time was identified just for the City of Coquitlam.
Given the above, I believe there is something seriously wrong with the math and projections if the HPO report says cost of repairs over the next five years could reach $700 million when only 45 per cent of B.C.’s leaky condos have been fixed.
It is now reported the average loan amount is $63,511 in 2007, up a whopping 63 per cent since 2000 when it was $24,144.
Here we are one decade after the Barrett Commission and the HPO is now projecting as much as a third of all leaky condos will remain unrepaired after 2012. Why, and why haven’t the builders responsible repaired them all? Well, the government has simply chosen not to protect consumers or hold builders accountable.
This incompetence and gross injustice further demonstrates the complete and continuing mishandling of the leaky condo issue by senior governments.
“Let the buyer beware” prevails.