Author: Siska Concannon, Marketing Manager. Unitex Granular Marble Pty Ltd
It has long been established that price is the tangible recognition of value – you wouldn’t expect to pay $10 for a Tiffany ring, in fact if you saw that price you would debate the authenticity and thus would surmise it to be a fake…to which you would probably be right.
So why does this understanding and acceptance of quality and price not resonate to an individual’s highest commodity and most valued possession – their home.
Well, the problem is, ‘they’ do. The home owner, the Architect or Building Designer, Building Surveyors, and the reputable Builders and Applicators do understand and more than accept the notion of quality and the price association…but in an unregulated industry, unfortunately, in some cases ‘they’ are still at the hands of the discreditable Applicators and Builders that are looking for increased margin. Why not, I hear some of you say – it’s not their home, they get to walk away and will be long gone when the cracks and rust marks appear, and in the worst case, serious complications arise. Why can’t we all make money…to (mis) quote the infamous Madge, we live in a capitalist world and we are a capitalist girl/boy. The problem with this is that someone pays in the end, and more often than not this will always be the property owner.
The Australian Building Codes Board have put together a list of criteria that manufacturers must abide by if they are to promote an acceptance by this national body that their systems do what they say they will do, and will provide extensive benefit to the property owner. This accreditation is known as a CodeMark accreditation.
However, currently the ABCB have done little to push this or make it law. So manufacturers that go to the great expense and effort of attempting to achieve this prestigious accreditation for their system (beware of product only CodeMark accreditation) are left with not much to advertise on as most property owners don’t know what it is, or the trade quite frankly don’t have to use it so often will go for a cheaper option.
Architects, Building Designers, reputable Builders and reputable Applicators along with Building Surveyors are forcing the use of CodeMark only accredited systems and, Surveyors in particular, will not accept anything less. As they are all too aware, that if a fully accredited system from the one manufacturer is not used (especially when it is specified to be used) they are all in for one big headache…financially and legally speaking, and quite frankly, why take the risk. If you cannot guarantee a project (manufacturers guarantee) why enter into it, especially when the project in question is not only an investment into your future but will house some of the most precious investments you will ever have.
It is the same argument as can be seen in the car world. Would you place a Ford engine into a Holden and expect it to perform to the promises of Holden, if it even performs at all? Of course not. Taking products from various manufacturers, even if they are designed to perform the same job (ie render coat), will not ensure performance but it will almost always ensure lengthy and costly problems.
So what is the outcome? Sigh and just accept the status quo – the industry is never going to change, so who am I to think I can do anything about it? The greatest fallacy in that statement is that in reality, you are actually in the power seat. If your property design plans or builders quote specify a manufacturers fully accredited system, that is what you are legally required to provide your client, and as the client what you are legally entitled to. If it doesn’t, then make sure it does. Be on site and be the police of your project or your clients project. If you cannot, make sure someone is. Form a professional relationship with a reputable and accredited manufacturers representative/s – get advice and understand what value you are getting in return for the stipulated price. Value is everything and the price is secondary to the long term value. If the manufacturer cannot guarantee their systems, nor supply you with their accreditation details, then be very wary.
Education is key, by knowing what accredited building systems achieve, who best to speak to, what will achieve your clients desired outcome and budget, what to look for and what to ask for, will put you in the drivers seat and provide you with 100% reassurance that the all too common issues with mismatching systems, and thus the nightmare of being left with zero warranty, will not affect you.
Unitex Render Warehouse offers free seminars and mini-courses to Trade and the general public on all systems and how to avoid future risk to your new build or renovation.
Contact Unitex Marketing via the website www.render.com.au or on 03 9768 4910.
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