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City builds better construction rules

A building leans against its neighbor in Xiapu county, Fujian province, on Monday. The tilting was caused by construction at a nearby site. Residents of the building have been moved to a hotel. [Dongnan Express]
Two months after an under-construction residential high-rise toppled over in Shanghai's Minhang district, developers are being ordered to carry out mandatory safety checks in the future on all newly built apartments.

The regulation will take effect Oct 1 and compel developers to check on the appearance, function and overall quality of apartments as well as the structural integrity of their buildings.

Shanghai's municipal bureau of social housing and building will also require developers to produce a certificate guaranteeing the quality of their apartments.

If homebuilders fail to comply, buyers can refuse to pay for units. The authorities also can hand out fines and even create fault records for uncooperative developers, the regulation says.

Under current laws, developers are required only to inspect a few rooms before selling units.

The rules are aimed at ending shoddy workmanship in the construction industry, but some industry insiders are already predicting problems with the legislation.

"How can people be their own judges? It is obviously problematic for developers to conduct quality checks on buildings that they constructed," said Du Yueping, a real estate lawyer in Shanghai. "Supervisors cannot be credible either because they are paid by the developers.

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 Source : China Daily  Editor: Ivy
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