Interim New Homes Quality Board launches

A new independent body has been launched with the responsibility of quality and consumer redress of new build homes.

Natalie Elphicke MP has been announced as the interim chair for the new body, which is called the New Homes Quality Board.

The move is the signal of the first steps towards the creation of a New Homes Ombudsman scheme. One of the main functions of the interim board will be to oversee the composition and appointment of a permanent board.

The board has now ‘met’ for the first time, and alongside the appointment of a permanent board, will oversee:

  • the completion, consultation on and adoption of a new comprehensive and robust industry code of practice that will place more stringent requirements on all parties involved in the construction, inspection, sale and aftercare of new homes
  • agreeing a process to appoint a New Homes Ombudsman service to adjudicate against the new code

The aim is for a permanent chair and board to be in place by Autumn with a view to the new code and ombudsman service being in place by the start of 2021. There will then be a transitionary period for builders to sign up to the new arrangements.

Stewart Baseley, executive chairman at Home Builders Federation said; “This is the next step in what has been a long and strenuous journey involving a broad range of stakeholders. The move demonstrates the commitment of the industry to providing buyers with absolute confidence in their builder and the quality of their new home.

“Customers will be reassured that in the instances where they do have issues with their new home, they will have recourse to a fast, effective independent dispute resolution service via an ombudsman. The new robust arrangements will provide a huge challenge for builders but the industry fully recognises the need to deliver, and we will.”

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