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Learn more about Ontario’s new home warranty coverage

Not all new home warranties in Canada are the same. But did you know that Ontario’s program is one of the most comprehensive?

Almost every new home or condo in the province is covered by a new home warranty. This mandatory warranty protection is provided by registered builders and administered by Tarion, lasting up to seven years.

Builders typically pass the cost of enrolling a new home into the warranty program onto the consumer, sometimes as a separate line item. The warranty costs from $385 to a maximum of $1,500, depending on the cost of the home itself. For this one-time fee, new home buyers receive robust protection that covers defects in workmanship and materials and violations of the Ontario Building Code for up to seven years to a maximum of $300,000 per home or condo unit.

More specifically, the new home warranty provides Ontario consumers with coverage not available in other provinces. Here are five examples:

Deposit coverage. Even before you move into your new home, the warranty program protects your deposit up to $40,000 for freehold homes and $20,000 for condominium units.

Compensation for delayed closing or occupancy. If your builder agreed to deliver your home by a certain date and fails to deliver on that commitment, your builder may be required to compensate you for the delay, to a maximum of $7,500.

Radon gas. If excessive levels of radon gas are found in your home anytime during the seven year period of your warranty, remediation of the gas is fully covered.

Unauthorized substitutions. If your choice of a marble countertop in the kitchen was contained in your Agreement of Purchase and Sale and accepted by the builder, then the warranty provides protection if your builder cannot deliver on that promise.

Illegal building. The warranty backstops warranties not honoured by illegal builders. Illegal builders typically avoid enrolling a new home in the warranty program, which means the homeowner is likely unaware of their rights and responsibilities. The good news is that failure by the builder to enrol a home does not affect your warranty eligibility.