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  • Peter Sim

    Peter has acted in a wide range of civil litigation matters including commercial law, construction disputes, personal injury, insolvency and wrongful dismissal.

    (204) 934-2565

The Government of Manitoba has announced a plan for a mandatory warranty to protect new home buyers.

Under The New Home Warranty Act, which is now before the legislature, all new home builders will be required to register with a government office. A building permit for a new home may not be issued unless the builder is registered and the home is covered by a new home warranty.

The new home warranty must be provided by a registered warranty provider which must either be an insurance company or have an insurance company undertake to assume its warranty obligations.

The minimum period for a warranty is:

  • any defects in labour, materials and design in houses and condominium units for 15 months;
  • any defects in labour, materials and design in condominium common elements for one year.
  • defects in the plumbing, heating and electrical systems for two years;
  • building code violations that constitute an unreasonable health or safety risk or are likely to result in material damage to the home for two years;
  • defects that render the home unfit to live in for two years;
  • defects in the building envelope, including water penetration for two years; and
  • structural defects for seven years.

If there is a change of ownership of the home during the warranty period, the warranty rights will be transferred to the new owner.

The minimum amount of coverage under a warranty is $100,000 for each dwelling unit and for common elements of a condominium the lesser of $100,000 for each unit in the building and $2,500,000.

The provisions of the Act apply despite any agreement to the contrary and any waiver or release of rights under the Act has no effect.

An individual who wishes to build a home for his or her own use may apply for an exemption from the warranty requirements as an owner-builder. However, an owner-builder may not sell a new home until the period that the warranty would have been in effect has expired. This would be seven years from the date of completion. However, the registrar appointed under the Act may grant permission to sell a new home before the expiry to the warranty period if the owner or some third party would suffer undue hardship.

The legislation is still in first reading state and may be changes before it is enacted. Once the legislation is in force regulations with provide further details or the required warranty and may exempt certain classes of builders or buildings from the Act.

This article is presented for informational purposes only. The content does not constitute legal advice or solicitation and does not create a solicitor client relationship. The views expressed are solely the authors’ and should not be attributed to any other party, including Thompson Dorfman Sweatman LLP (TDS), its affiliate companies or its clients. The authors make no guarantees regarding the accuracy or adequacy of the information contained herein or linked to via this article. The authors are not able to provide free legal advice. If you are seeking advice on specific matters, please contact Keith LaBossiere, CEO & Managing Partner at kdl@tdslaw.com, or 204.934.2587. Please be aware that any unsolicited information sent to the author(s) cannot be considered to be solicitor-client privileged.

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