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    The Open Door Blog


Whether you own a new home or condo, are considering buying one, or just love to dream about it, the Open Door blog is here to share stories that can help you protect what is likely the biggest investment of your life.

The Open Door blog is published by Tarion, a non-profit corporation that administers Ontario’s New Home Warranty Plan and registers all new home builders in Ontario. Click here to learn more about us.


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Travelling to Asia Provides a Contrasting Perspective on New Home Building
January 12, 2016
Travelling to Asia Provides a Contrasting Perspective on New Home Building

One of Tarion’s employees recently took a once in a life-time trip through various parts of Asia for three weeks; encountering what many travelers experience: a glimpse into how life is lived in other parts of the world.

He made his way around different cities such as Macau, Phnom Penh, Ho Chi Minh City, Siem Reap, Hanoi and Hong Kong. Congested cities, fast-moving electric rickshaws whizzing by in hectic order or ox carts slowly plodding through the dirt streets, all put into context how differently we live in Canada.

We thought it would be interesting to share his photos and his perspective on how people live on the other side of the world.



A different life, and different building materials

He particularly noticed the homes the people lived in and how they were built. Scaffolding made out of bamboo was common. So too was the contrast of run-down shanty homes next to gleaming condominiums towering beside them. He also passed by the numerous floating grocery stores (food markets on small boats) and fishing villages built on rickety stilts that jutted out and over water.

It was quite an interesting experience in terms of all the different aspects and contrasts. There was a big mixture of old and new throughout the cities. Ultra-modern with ultra-rural.”

The majority of Asian cities are faced with extreme circumstances surrounding home construction. In Hanoi, for example, there is virtually no construction regulation. According to an article in the Guardian, it is estimated that 90 per cent of its buildings have been built without official permission and just recently has begun implementing regulations on construction. Most, if not all, of the places that were visited have no warranty that provides protection for new home owners.

Let’s Not Take Our Standards For Granted

Seeing how people live in other countries and cultures brought to mind how fortunate we are in Ontario. Our regulated measures, building codes, urban planning and protection of one of life’s biggest investments can be easily taken for granted. High standards are the norm for us in Canada, as they should be. And in that very fact we are fortunate.

When he arrived back at the office, our well-travelled and jet-lagged staff member brought with him a whole new appreciation of where he lives, and the importance of our work. By sharing his experience with us, as well as a new perspective on our building industry’s high standard for construction and regulation, we found our own perspective renewed.

Lesson learned:

A comprehensive new home warranty program that protects new home buyers from poor construction and maintains standards in new home building is not universal
There are many countries around the world that do not provide their citizens with the same basic rights and protections we enjoy in Canada. We should never take these for granted.

Tips for using Tarion:

Know your rights as a new home buyers. Check out the Homeowner Information Package to learn how you’re protected.
Not sure if it’s covered under the warranty? You can see what’s covered in the Construction Performance Guidelines

The goal of this blog is to provide you with general information about the warranty process by sharing real experiences from new homeowners. The blog should not be relied upon as legal advice. For privacy reasons, we will not address or resolve current cases in a public forum, so any comments or questions that are posted on this site that describe individual cases cannot be discussed. If you have a question about your warranty or Tarion generally, we would be pleased to discuss your issue, in the context of your particular circumstances and in confidence. We exercise reasonable care to avoid offensive, illegal or defamatory content from being posted, as well as comments that are intended solely for self-promotion or considered to be spam.