Knock down rebuild Pascoe Vale

Mark Bryson - Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Owner builder gone so wrong!
Berstan Homes are currently in the middle of a knock down rebuild in Pascoe Vale and the build is at lock up stage. Next door to the Berstan home is a neighbour who is doing an owner builder project that involves the construction of a basement on the boundary of our construction. From the pictures you can see what has gone so wrong and as time marches on will get progressively worse and is extremely dangerous.

The basement has no shoring to hold the excavated earth walls in place and they are collapsing. Our foundations are likely to be undermined being 1.2metres away and could potentially cause extensive damage to our homes structural integrity.

Many questions need answering here:

  • How did an owner builder get a permit to undertake works clearly beyond his capabilities?
  • What was the engineer thinking certifying works without question of the owner builder’s capabilities?
  • How did the owner builder get passed the Victorian Building Authority?
  • The VBA clearly states on its website an owner builder requires the following: "Has the prescribed knowledge of the duties and responsibilities of an owner-builder"

Building a basement on a boundary is not anything out of the ordinary but for the inexperienced this is an extremely technical project to undertake. The works have been reported to the council and a stop works direction has since been issued.