Homeowners are required to attach a certificate of compliance or non-compliance to the contract of sale when they sell their property. The owner of a property must register their swimming pool and/or spa on the NSW Swimming Pool Register. In this blog we review how to register a swimming pool and what the requirements are.
How Do You Register a Swimming Pool?
Swimming pool registration is a straightforward process. It is performed online using the NSW Swimming Pool Register website. A Registration Certificate is obtained after entering the required details about the pool or spa.
How Do You Obtain a Certificate of Compliance?
You can seek a Certificate of Compliance from either a private certifier or from a local council. This involves the certifier or local authority inspecting the barrier around a pool or spa. If it is compliant with the legislative regulations, you will receive a Certificate of Compliance which is valid for three years. If you are selling the property or leasing it out, you will need the certificates. The Registration Certificate and the Certificate of Compliance must be attached to the sale contract or to the residential tenancy agreement. This does not apply to strata properties (with more than two lots), or properties in a community scheme.
What Is a Certificate of Non-Compliance?
If the pool or spa does not abide by the regulations, the certifier or local authority will provide a Certificate of Non- Compliance. They will also provide a written notice of why the pool or spa is non-compliant and the steps that can be taken to ensure remedy this. A Certificate of Non-Compliance can be attached to a contract for sale or residential tenancy agreement in lieu of a Certificate of Compliance. It can only be attached if the notice received by the inspector does not deem the pool to be a hazard to public safety. If it is deemed to be a hazard the seller will have to rectify the problem.
If a Certificate of Non-Compliance is attached the responsibility will transfer to the purchaser, who must bring the pool or spa into compliance within 90 days of settlement. Unlike the Certificate of Compliance, the Certificate of Non-Compliance is only valid for one (1) year; if it lapses the owner will have to apply for a new certificate.
Purchasing a Property with a Swimming Pool
When purchasing a property with a swimming pool it is important for your solicitor to check the compliance status of the pool. They can check if the pool registration is missing, or if it is non-compliant. Your solicitor will do this by requesting the notice provided by the certifier or the council from the seller’s solicitor. This can be useful in negotiating the price of the property, and it will inform you as to what steps you need to perform post- settlement, if you need to bring the pool within the regulations.