NEW HOME WARRANTY PLANS – Vendor ­- bound by new home warranty legislation – Vendors of homes not previously occupied.

Trial of Stefko, who was selling a home not previously lived in (a new home), on her own behalf, without being a registered real estate agent. Stefko sold the house at 187 Poyntz Avenue to Mohammed and Gangadin. In 2005, the property had been purchased by Ramcharan. He applied for a permit for tearing down and building a home. When he, he declared that the Ontario New Home Warranty Program did not apply to him. Ontario issued a permit to him to build. Ramcharan sold the home to a corporation in 2009. The house was described as “brand new” and not yet finished. The company then sold the house to Stefko later in 2009. The listing described the home as vacant and 80% complete. The court decided that Stefko had never lived in the home. When she sold it, she also listed it as vacant. When Mohammed and Gangadin viewed the home, there was no furniture and the appliances were still wrapped in their original wrappings. The home did not have an occupancy permit at the time and Stefko sold the home. Stefko had not registered the home under the Ontario New Home Warranty Program and she was not registered as the homes seller.

HELD: Stefko found guilty. The court did not accept her argument that since the home was not registered under the Ontario New Home Warranty Program when it was at the building permit stage, it stayed outside Ontario New Home Warranty Program once finished. If this court accepted this them it would defeat the purpose and objects of the Ontario New Home Warranty Program. It would be against public policy to allow Stefko to escape the requirement to register as a seller because of the previous owners declaration on his permit application. The court also found that the home had never been lived in. For occupation to occur there had to be some element of residency or tenancy. Simple ownership was not enough. There was no evidence that Stefko ever lived in or intended to live in the premises. The home did not have an occupancy permit when Stefko sold the property.