NSW Home Warranty Insurance Reforms Proceeding

Reforms to the NSW home warranty insurance scheme are proceeding, with new risk based pricing being phased in from 3 April 2017.

icare HBCF has indicated that all 17,000 registered builders in NSW should have received letters regarding the new premiums that will apply from that date, and that data issues that became apparent during this process should now be largely resolved.

NIBA understands HBCF has issued tenders for the provision of insurance agent services for the scheme.

NIBA has been advised that HBCF is currently reviewing the requirements for appointment as a distributor (insurance broker) for the scheme. Icare HBCF has undertaken to consult with NIBA on the scope of the proposed tender and the minimum requirements that HBCF will require. Following this process, expressions of interest will be sought from brokers wishing to play a role in the scheme.

In the meantime, HBCF has issued revised Distribution Deeds to brokers. NIBA raised a number of concerns in relation to the Distribution Deed, but HBCF has advised that there will be no changes to the Deed, which will operate for the next 4 – 6 months.

IMPORTANT: Insurance Brokers who wish to continue to provide advice and support to builder clients under the NSW home warranty scheme should execute the new Distributor Deed prior to 31 March 2017, and return the Deed to their respective insurance agent.

NIBA will continue to be represented on the HBCF Distributor Advisory Committee, and we will provide further information on the implementation of the scheme reforms as information comes to hand.

NIBA is also liaising with the NSW State Insurance Regulatory Authority in relation to the implementation of the NSW Government’s commitment to introduce competition and innovation into the home warranty insurance scheme. We understand legislation to give effect to changes that were announced late last year is currently being prepared. We will keep members informed of developments in this area.

Members with feedback on the implementation of the home warranty reforms should contact NIBA CEO Dallas Booth at dbooth@niba.com.au.