An unlicensed builder has been ordered to do 11 months’ home detention for using forged documents relating to Christchurch building consents.
Judge David Ruth imposed the sentence in the Christchurch District Court today, after guilty pleas in May to four charges from Travis Jansen, of Old School Builders (Christchurch) Ltd.
Old School Builders was removed from the Companies Register on June 20, 2017.
Judge Ruth imposed the home detention on charges of using a forged document, and using a forged document to get a financial advantage. He convicted and discharged Jansen on charges of carrying out restricted building work when he was not licensed, and doing work without a building consent.
When he was charged, Jansen lived in Rolleston. When he pleaded guilty in May, the court was told that he was living in Masterton and working in Wanganui.
The Christchurch City Council said the charges related to work done on a couple’s Riccarton property.
Jansen told the property owners that the council was “a pain to deal with”. When one of the owners said she wanted the process to be undertaken properly, Jansen said he had a friend in the council who could help in having the necessary consents processed quickly.
The house owners engaged him to renovate their kitchen, remove an internal wall, and install a beam into the roof of their house.
The owners received a bill which included $1436 for “council costs”, referring to the acquisition of the building consent. Jansen showed the owners the building consent documents which were on Christchurch City Council letterhead.
No building consent had been applied for or issued. The invoice was paid in full.
Another $15,000 invoice for the building work was also paid in May 2017.
The work was then done on the house. A building consent was required, but none had been applied for or issued. Jansen was not a licensed builder and was not under the supervision of a practitioner with a licence.
In June 2017, he told the owners that a council inspector had been on site for an hour-and-a-half and the building had passed the inspection.
That same night, the owners noticed problems with the gib board Jansen had installed. They asked him to redo that work, but there was no response.
Three days later, the owner said her father would complete the rest of the work and asked Jansen to send an itemised list of materials and labour so that she could organise a refund for the remaining work. Jansen sent this through, but said he was still owed $3239.
He emailed through a Code of Compliance Certificate, but it was forged and had not been issued by the council.