hired temporary fence damage - development

Discussion in 'Development' started by samiam, 20th Nov, 2019.

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  1. samiam

    samiam Well-Known Member

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    We were asked by our builder to put fences around our "protected" trees (recommended by builder's Arborist on DA) before the building so we did (hired, temporary fence, 140 metre or so)
    As expected, trees/fences were not that protected during the building process and a lot of temporary fences got damaged - most of the fences are no longer straight or standing.
    I haven't raised this with our site manager yet but just want to check here first who is going to bear the damaged cost. The house is near completion and handover would be next week.
     
  2. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    That's the reason the builder got you to do the hiring of the fence, you're ultimately responsible.

    Are the trees within the site or on the street? Less chance of holding the builder liable for anything on the street which is outside of the site.
     
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  3. samiam

    samiam Well-Known Member

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    Trees are on our land. These are left by suggestion of the builder arborist. Arborist also recommended we handed them protected (by fence and signs of trees protection zone) which we did (before handing over the land to the builder). They didn’t look after the trees (or the fences around it) although they said they will.
     
  4. Westminster

    Westminster Tigress at Tiger Developments Business Member

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    I suspect as there is nothing in writing saying that the Builder would be responsible for any damage to your fences that you will be responsible to your hiring company.
     
  5. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't be happy either !

    Try walking onto your land when the builder is in construction phase and you will be told to leave as the site is under the control of the builder (only authorized persons, public liability risk, blah blah), so if there is damage it ultimately falls to the builder:p

    You likely have the Arborist report requesting tree protection zones and possibly have emails between yourself and the builder regarding them also, if so I would be having a polite chat before or at final inspection (before final payment) asking the builder what happened to the fences and the tree damage !

    Should the builder want to get defensive you are well within your rights (at your cost) to have the Arborist back on site for a post construction inspection and report.
    Often councils will have the tree preservation order attached to your building permit with a "bond", if the tree's are damaged or removed you may have trouble getting council to sign off, they may keep the bond and have you replant 2 tree's of their choice and fine you as the owner o_O
    A casual talk may get you results, and email might get them off side, a solicitor's letter won't get you anywhere fast :(
     
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  6. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    I went through similar in NSW last year (Shire)
    New multi storey apartment building
    A very large grey gum at the very rear most inaccessible corner died
    Quote to remove was over $12,000

    As the chairperson I did some research into the tree preservation order, it is valid long after completion just in case the tree dies, our builder had trenched within a meter of the tree to 2m deep to run a storm water drain, this caused the tree to die.

    I discussed it with council first to be better informed, then had a chat to the builder, he wasn't happy denied liability and refused, but after I asked what other development applications they had before council as I would be reporting the breach of the tree preservation order they agreed to remove it at their own cost :D
    Yes, we replanted ;) (With much smaller similar species)
     
  7. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    Bonsai Japanese maple doesn't count as a tree. :rolleyes:
     
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  8. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    Please don't tell council :(
    I've submitted zoomed photo's with Coles mini's nearby for perspective :p
     
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  9. Tools

    Tools Well-Known Member

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    Often the fence supplier doesn't worry about some damage but it would depend on how badly damaged. They expect some wear and tear and the boys on the trucks don;t want to be filling out any paperwork!

    Tools
     
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  10. samiam

    samiam Well-Known Member

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    No it wasn’t. But there is documentation that builder will be responsible for the trees damage
    To be honest I don’t care much about the trees as they are gum trees and have to go (actually don’t even need to seek approval because they are within 3m from the building- it was the builder’s arborist made everyone believed that the gum trees must stay)