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How does the mandatory insurance on new constructions work?

Property Law

Antonio Flores Vila

15th of March 2002

Q. We have just completed on a large plot (24000sqMts) in Arroyo Coche, Casabermeja, Malaga. We are now trying to find an Architect to turn our detailed sketch into plans and get them passed and, a building certificate supplied.Our lawyer has evidently obtained a certificate of permission to build on the plot to a maximum of 237sq Mts. As a building tradesman (qualified heating/plumbing engineer & electrician) I would like to do a lot of the work myself, such as the foundations, the interior walls and all the mechanical and electrical services. I would like to act, on site, as my own contracts manager deligating those jobs which I am not confident of doing to other proffesional tradesmen, such as the bricklaying.All of course whilst conforming to the directions and instructions of the Architect.

My serious concern is that of the new 10 year Insured guarantee law, how it will effect me and, how I should safely and legally conform to It. I have received so much contradictory opinions and advice from open forums, could you please explain the procedure I must follow to be safe and abiding by the law? Also, I understand that I'm not to build within 25 Mts of any boundary line. Could you confirm this and please tell me if their are any exceptions to this rule such as written permission from a neighbour? If you could answer these questions I would be very grateful indeed. Many thanks in anticipation.

Leonard Scott
Chichester. West Sussex . England

    A. I cannot see a major problem in respect of conformation to the requirements of article 19 and 20 of the Edification Act. Article 20 stipulates that no public deed of new works will be authorised or registered in the Land registry unless the guarantees contemplated in article 19 have been provided. Article 19 stipulates that the developer, and the contractor in one case, will have to take out three insurance policies, covering:

    1. Minor defects affecting finishings or final details (during one year)
    2. Damages to constructive elements and habitability conditions (during three years)
    3. Serious damage to foundations, beams, pillars and any other element directly compromising the mechanical resistance and stability of the building. (10 years)

    The building contractor will take out the insurance in case 1 ,and the developer in cases 2 and 3. The policy beneficiaries will be the developer and any subsequent purchaser of the property. You should seek advice from your arquitect regarding the most competitive insurance company, both in terms of price and efficiency. Dont forget that the construction stages will be supervised by an inspector from the insurance company, and the works could be delayed if they felt that the works are not complying with their minimum standards. I cannot help you in that regard as I am not into the business of construction, and therefore I suggest you go with the indications of either an arquitect or a building engineer. Regarding the boundary line, this particular requirement will depend on the particular ordinances of the municipality in question, in this case, Casabermeja. That can be checked with the Town Hall building engineer. These ordinances are not normally negotiable between parties.


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