CALGARY – A homebuilding company in Calgary is facing dozens of safety charges after a three-month investigation.
The city announced 49 charges against Dhaliwal Homes Ltd., the sole director and two agents acting on behalf of Dhaliwal Homes Ltd. for allegedly not complying with the Safety Codes Act of Alberta. In addition, two charges for failing to comply with the City of Calgary’s land use bylaws were also laid against Dhaliwal Homes Ltd. and the sole director.
The charges were laid after a three-month investigation by Calgary Building Services. The safety act violations are related to the construction of two semi-detached properties and include:
- Building without a municipal building permit for both homes and the detached garages.
- Building without the necessary safety code inspections (electrical, gas, plumbing and building) being conducted.
- Knowingly submitting false and misleading information in relation to permits, inspections and permission to occupy.
According to the city, the Alberta Safety Codes are designed to protect the public, create compliance and deter developers from unsafe practices. Dhaliwal Homes Ltd. now faces fines as high as $100,000 per offence and up to six months in prison if found guilty of safety codes offences. They also are facing a maximum fine of $10,000 and up to a year in prison for the two charges related to the Municipal Government Act. The case is set to be heard at the Provincial Court of Alberta in Calgary.
“Building safety violations pose a serious risk to homeowners and the community at large,” said Cliff de Jong, manager of building safety, in a statement. “The seriousness and magnitude of these violations and the impact to unsuspecting potential buyers in this red-hot real estate market, led the City of Calgary to conduct an investigation and lay charges.”
The city encouraged homebuyers to hire a professional real estate lawyer for any residential agreements. Buyers should also ask sellers to produce copies of their inspection report and building and trade permits for any new build or major upgrades to home’s interior or exterior. Officials said buyers should also verify proof of a residential developer’s credentials prior to submitting any deposits or intent to purchase agreements.
Homeowners can verify the zoning and pulled permits for a prospective purchase by searching for the property’s address at the city’s website: calgary.ca.