Roadmap to reduce scams and assist homebuilders launched
A roadmap detailing what homebuilders must look for when hiring a contractor and to prevent shoddy work when constructing their homes, was launched on Tuesday by the Competition and Consumer Affairs Commission (CCAC).
The roadmap, which can be accessed at ccac.gov.gy, covers the acquisition of lands, planning with an architect, approval of house plans, selection of contractors, access to finance and construction of the building.
The launch was hosted at Duke Lodge, Georgetown where acting Consumer Affairs Officer Rusante Perry noted that the programme is as a result of several complaints received from homebuilders.
“We had complaints as simple as a step being built without any steel because the consumer failed to provide it and the contractor went ahead knowing what should’ve been done…most recently we had a complaint with a consumer had a cupboard and there were cracks because poor quality wood was used,” she explained.
Perry said approximately 25 complaints are received annually.
Once a complaint is made, the CCAC sends someone to verify the report and then launch an investigation. Where the contractor is found to be culpable, they are made to replace, refund or repair the damaged facility.
The Consumer Affairs Officer pointed out that the roadmap will provide guidance to avoid these issues in the future, “because you don’t want after you move in, then you encounter problems.”
Director of the CCAC, Feyona Austin- Paul, pointed out that the construction sector contributes eight per cent revenue to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
She noted that as the Government is working to expand the housing sector, the agency is working to empower consumers to make the right choices.
“Our goal as an institution is to ensure that there is a level playing field for all stakeholders…ultimately consumers must not be disenfranchised in any way regardless of what the situation may be,” she noted.
The CCAC’s roadmap also includes contact information for the various Neighbourhood Democratic Councils (NDCs), Ministry of Housing and other stakeholders.