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Better cyber service for building sector

10 August 2006

Better cyber service for building sector and consumers

The Minister for Building Issues Clayton Cosgrove has today launched a new website that gives users faster and easier access to information and services related to building sector legislation, housing services including weathertightness, and tenancy advice.

The Department of Building and Housing’s new website - www.dbh.govt.nz - went live overnight. It replaces the website created after the Department's establishment in 2004.

"The old website recorded 1.2 million hits in the year to July 2006, and I expect even greater uptake for the new site," Mr Cosgrove said. "If you are a builder, an architect, an engineer, a home owner, a tenant or landlord, you will be able to find exactly what is relevant to you, and quicker than ever before, through the improved navigation features.”

The new website contains new content, including a building sector information section, and Tenancy and Building A-to-Z sections, plus frequently asked questions.

"For example, if you have a question about your rights and responsibilities as a tenant or landlord, you can find answers using the Tenancy A-to-Z. The Building A-to-Z provides a glossary of building terms with links to information ranging from weathertightness to licensing. The old site's information and resources are also included."

Mr Cosgrove said the new site also has a new "consulting on" hotlink where users can find discussion papers the government is seeking input on.

“The website is an excellent example of how the Department is integrating its services. It provides information across all areas of building and housing – from legislative requirements, online services, ways to sort out problems, and how to participate in consultation processes” he said. "It will be valuable for the sector and consumers."

Mr Cosgrove said the website will keep evolving to meet the needs of its many users.

“A great example of this will be later this month when tenants and landlords will be able to make a Tenancy Tribunal application online and pay with their Visa or MasterCard."

The site is accessible for a wide range of users, including people with disabilities, people with limited bandwidth, and those using a cellphone or portable device to connect.

The new website is part of the government's suite of changes to transform the building and construction sector, including major reforms to the Weathertight Homes Resolution Service, the licensing of building practitioners while protecting the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) tradition, an accreditation and auditing scheme for Building Consent Authorities, the Building Code review, sector and consumer education, and building product certification.

ENDS

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