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An owner builder is a person authorized by the Homeowner Protection Office (HPO) to build a new home for their personal use. An owner builder isn't required to be licensed by the HPO to build the new home or arrange for third-party home warranty insurance on that home.
Individuals wanting to be an owner builder of a new home are required to obtain an Owner Builder Authorization from the HPO and to pay a fee, prior to commencing construction of that new home. These requirements are in effect for all areas of British Columbia, regardless of whether building permits are required or not and are in keeping with amendments to the Homeowner Protection Act and regulation.
Read our Regulatory Bulletin 4: Information for Owner Builders to learn:
- Requirements and obligations before you start your owner-built home
- The eligibility checklist for Owner Builder Authorization
- Step-by-step instructions to apply for Owner Builder Authorization
- Requirements and obligations once construction is completed
- Frequently asked questions and answers
View Owner Builder Authorization video
Learn how the HPO administers and monitors the exemption for owner built homes to protect consumers and ensure a level playing field for Licensed Residential Builders. View video in Punjabi.
Buying or Selling an Owner-Built Home
An owner builder must occupy their new home themselves for at least one year after obtaining an occupancy permit and are not permitted to sell or rent the new home during that one-year period. An owner builder who built their home prior to November 19, 2007 must provide prospective purchasers with the old-form Owner Builder Declaration and Disclosure Notice within the first 10 years after occupancy. An owner builder building under an Owner Builder Authorization (after November 19, 2007) is required to provide an Owner Builder Disclosure Notice, obtained from the HPO, to prospective purchasers within the first 10 years after occupancy. The owner builder must advise the HPO of the occupancy date and the HPO does not release the Disclosure Notice until the one-year occupancy requirement has been verified.
Read our Regulatory Bulletin 5: Buying or Selling an Owner-built Home to learn:
- Occupancy and disclosure requirements for owner-built homes
- Statutory warranty requirements for owner-built homes
- Requirements for selling an owner built home during construction or before the occupancy requirements are met
- Illegal sales and listings
- Owner Builder Permission to Sell Application
- Mortgage Confirmation Certificate - Owner Builders (for applicants claiming financial hardship)