Risk-Based Inspection Program FAQ page
This program was created in response to a recommendation from Ontario’s Auditor General and replaces the previous Targeted Inspection Program. View our frequently asked questions below, or visit our page on the Risk-Based Inspection program for an overview.
What is the Risk-Based Inspection (RBI) Program?
The primary purpose and core of the RBI Program is Tarion sharing its experience and technical knowledge on-site to help builders reduce the risk of future warranty claims by:
- Discussing construction practices, designs, and materials;
- Identifying construction practices and technical issues that may contribute to future warranty claims;
- Providing a coaching opportunity between the RBI representative and the vendor/builder with a view to long-term improvement through best practices; and,
- Facilitating builder education and to identify emerging trends and construction methods used by a builder that may lead to future warranty claims.
The visit is a routine on-site visit at a representative sample of units under construction. The RBI representative will spend approximately one hour with you and your site representative(s) to talk about:
- Best practices
- Any challenges you have encountered at your site,
- General issues encountered in the industry.
The vast majority of site visits end with vendor/builders having a short-list of items that they have expressed interest in either adopting or researching further. Despite initial hesitations, builders typically end the site visit with positive comments about the meeting and the overall program.
The program does not reproduce or replace the role of municipal building inspectors, other approval agencies or replace inspections required under the Ontario Building Code (OBC).
While the Risk-Based Inspection Program applies to all builders, it does not apply to condominium projects that are required to meet the reporting requirements outlined in Registrar Bulletin 19 (typically Type C & D condominiums).
Where can I go to find out more about the RBI Program?
To find out more information about the RBI Program, please visit our RBI Program Web page.
Is there a Registrar Bulletin for the RBI Program?
Yes – Registrar Bulletin 09 which can be found on the Registrar Bulletins & Advisories page.
How do I contact the RBI group?
You can contact Tarion’s RBI Group by sending an email to the RBI Mailbox at RBI.Program@tarion.com.
What happened to the previous Targeted Inspection Program?
The RBI Program was created in response to a recommendation from Ontario’s Auditor General Report and, as of February 1, 2021, replaces the previous Targeted Inspection Program. You can review the Auditor General's report on our plans & reports page.
Is the RBI site visit mandatory?
This program applies to all builders and the core of the program is Tarion sharing its experience and technical knowledge on-site to help builders reduce their risk of future warranty claims. The vast majority of builders enter the process uncertain of exactly what to expect but to date Tarion has received very positive feedback about the program. This program is quite different from the municipal building inspections that builders are familiar with.
The current Program (RB-09) applies to any vendor/builder with homes enrolled on or after February 1st, 2021. Homes that had their construction authorized by Tarion via a pre-February 1, 2021 “Terms and Conditions Letter” may be subject to specific ‘Terms & Conditions’ (T&C) that apply the provisions of the current or past versions of the program.
Is there a fee for a site visit?
Tarion does not charge a fee for a Site and Practices Inspection or a Targeted Constructions Inspection site visit.
The builder may be required to reimburse Tarion for additional inspection costs related to repeated inspections required due to the lack of site access, incomplete work, or for any other reason that the builder could have reasonably provided notice to Tarion to reschedule the inspection.
What types of site visits does the RBI Program conduct?
There are two types of site visits:
- Site and Practices Inspection:
A Site and Practices Inspection is a routine on-site visit at a representative sample of units under construction. These site visits are intended to facilitate builder education and to identify emerging trends and construction methods used by a builder that may lead to future warranty claims.
- Targeted Construction Inspection:
A Targeted Construction Inspection is a more focused inspection that may be used in the following situations:
- A serious issue (e.g., structural or health & safety concern) is identified during the Site and Practices Inspection;
- A potential issue is reported to Tarion;
- A builder agrees to mitigate an identified risk; and / or,
- It is otherwise deemed appropriate by Tarion.
A Targeted Construction Inspection is conducted at the specific building or unit in question with a senior representative from the builder (such as a site supervisor and/or someone from Senior Management). If appropriate, Tarion’s RBI representative may be accompanied by third-party professionals.
What is involved with the Site and Practices Inspection site visit?
The Site and Practices Inspection site visit will take approximately one hour and consist of walkthrough of your site, including:
- General discussion about best practices;
- Any challenges you have encountered at your site; and
- General issues encountered in the industry.
Inspections will focus on any construction method used by the builder that may contribute to the risk of future claims
What is involved with the Targeted Construction Inspection site visit?
A Targeted Construction Inspection is conducted at the specific building or unit in question with a senior representative from the builder (such as a site supervisor or principal). If required, the RBI representative may be accompanied by a third-party professional.
These inspections are typically in response to a previously identified risk that requires specific follow-up to ensure the risk(s) are properly mitigated.
These risk(s) are typically identified through complaints, previous inspections, or a pattern of claims.
How long will the site visit take?
Site visits last on average one hour.
The length of inspection varies depending on the size of the site or number of units that are part of the site visit.
What are my Vendor/Builder Responsibilities?
Vendor/Builders are expected to comply by scheduling a mutually acceptable time for the inspection and ensuring that the appropriate representatives are present.
If the RBI representative identifies any significant risks during the inspection, they will provide the builder with a written summary of its findings. Builders are expected to respond to the RBI representative’s findings in writing within 10 business days. The builder’s response must include an outline of the method that will be used to address an identified risk as well as a timeline for resolving the situation
How will the site visit help me as a Builder?
The core of the program is sharing experience and technical knowledge on-site to help builders reduce the risk of future claims by discussing construction practices, designs, and materials.
The intention is for the builder to work collaboratively with RBI representative to identify construction practices that may pose a risk to future claims against the builder.
Do the RBI Program site visits replace the inspections required under the Ontario Building Code?
No, the inspections referenced in Registrar Bulletin 09 are risk-based inspections and do not replace inspections required under the Ontario Building Code (OBC).
The Program has been developed to supplement the OBC inspections and minimize any potential duplication.
How do I schedule a site visit?
You can schedule an RBI site visit by sending an email to the RBI Mailbox with your request – RBI.Program@tarion.com.
What if I have multiple construction sites and/or multiple vendor-builder numbers?
We work with all builders to develop a solution that works best for you.
We can arrange a single visit with multiple representatives, or we can arrange multiple site visits.
Which Builder representatives should be onsite for the site visit?
It is most beneficial for the builder for both a Senior Manager and the Site Supervisor(s) to be in attendance.
What if I have to reschedule the Site Visit?
Notify the RBI team at least 24 hours prior to any scheduled site visit should the site visit need to be rescheduled.
How often are the site visits conducted?
The frequency of the site visit will be established by the RBI representative based on the builder’s business practices, anticipated construction volume and past performance.
Some builders may have specific ‘Terms & Conditions’ (T&C) or ‘Qualifications for Enrolments’ (QFE) that apply a specific schedule.
Do I have to contact the RBI Program OR will they be contacting me to schedule the site visit?
It is very difficult for the RBI team to know when construction actually begins so, please feel free to reach out to us to schedule a site visit at RBI.Program@tarion.com. We will also be reaching out to you to schedule a site visit.
Is there a certain stage of construction that the site visit should be scheduled for?
Unless you are notified of specific timing requirements, the optimal stage of construction for the site visit is with windows in & sealed, prior to exterior cladding.
How long in advance do I have to notify of a request for a site visit?
If your ‘Terms & Conditions’ (T&C) or Notice of Proposal of Conditions requires you to contact Tarion under a specific schedule or at specific construction milestones to arrange for site visits, please provide 5-10 business days notification.