New Wānaka house demolished after builder cuts corners

by Kim Bowden - Nov 24, 2022

A new Wānaka house has had to be demolished after the builder did such a poor job that the building could not be rescued.

The Building Practitioners Board (BPB) has banned builder Ting Xie for five years and ordered him to pay $4,500.

The man has since left the country and his Otago-based company, Lakeside Construction Ltd, has gone into liquidation.

He's been found to have committed six offences across two building projects - one at Jack's Point, where all the cladding has had to be replaced, and one in Wānaka, where the council has required the property to be demolished.

In its decision the BPB notes Mr Xie's "actions showed a cavalier attitude to his legal obligations…It was evident that he lacked the skills and knowledge required to be a licensed building practitioner".

While the board acknowledges Mr Xie has left the country, it says the ruling may “deter others from such conduct”.

Mr Xie has not been involved in the investigation nor has he been at his hearing.

Giving evidence, one council inspector says Mr Xie "was 'out of his depth', did not understand what the council was asking him to do and had a mindset that he did it that way in Auckland so what was the problem".

On the Wānaka building, the inspector says Mr Xie had glued a bolt to give the impression of connection when there was none, double-stacked floor joists to achieve correct height, and had cantilever beams without bolts.

He describes the project as “one of the most error ridden properties I have ever supervised in 27 years", with “total disregard for structural details”.

At the the Queenstown site, evidence shows Mr Xie failed building inspections, did not rectify the issues flagged at the inspections, and then attempted to rebook inspections using different council staff. He also forged council inspection reports.

Queenstown Lakes District mayor Glyn Lewers is quoted in a media statement as praising council building inspectors "who spent hundreds of hours tracking the work of this individual and collating information that ultimately led to the recent hearing and successful resolution".


Support Crux Support Crux