Building Material Shortage
We are aware that many members are facing the challenges of material supply constraints, both in procuring the products and in managing delays and pricing issues.
There is no doubt that New Zealand is currently experiencing significant supply chain issues. These have been occurring for some time but have sharpened considerably since COVID-19.
The Master Builders team continues to advocate on these issues. This includes publicly communicating that New Zealand is experiencing global disruption, creating unpredictable and rising material costs and delays that are outside the control of our members, which in turn is making it very difficult to determine exactly how much a build will cost.
We have been working with the Construction Accord and David Kelly has appeared in front of the Select Committee to convey how this is impacting our members.
As members the key is to communicate and be up front and honest with your clients. Provide realistic timelines and cost structures and talk openly about the risk – then together you can manage this. If clients are also clear about their budgets, the builder can provide options that will fit within those and work together to get the best possible job within the budget available.
Hazelton Law have provided a guidance note on RBC1 contracts if this is helpful. This can be accessed by clicking here.
In November 2021, the Commerce Commission announced it will investigate the building material supply market, with the final report to be published in December 2022. We will be involved in this inquiry and have written a submission summarising our position on this inquiry.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important that all members follow the correct Health & Safety protocols to ensure that we can all remain as safe as possible. Vaccination is the biggest protection we have against contracting the virus, serious illness and death and Master Builders encourages all members and workers in the industry to be vaccinated.
In October 2021, CEO David Kelly publicly called on the government to mandate vaccination for the construction sector. This was followed up with a letter to government ministers further detailing the unique challenges members face in a COVID-19 work environment and how vaccination is a key component of keeping workers and the public safe.
We are working with CHASNZ to provide feedback on proposed changes to Health and Safety protocols.
CHASNZ updates its protocols regularly.
To see the most updated health and safety protocols, please visit their website.
Due to the current pandemic, and changes in immigration rules, Master Builders is aware that it is becoming increasingly difficult to find skilled workers, especially in specialist areas.
We have worked with MBIE in 2021 to establish 60 MIQ spots per month for workers entering the construction industry. We are continuing to work with Immigration NZ and MBIE to try and alleviate some of the pressures for builders in getting the labour they need in order for their business to continue to operate effectively. Changes to border entry are fluid and continuing to change, and we will communicate to our members when significant changes happen that could present opportunities for skilled workers to be welcomed in New Zealand.