Author Topic: Building Control compliance certification  (Read 304 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

CleeHillbilly

  • New Member
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Building Control compliance certification
« on: November 17, 2017, 09:20:52 pm »
I moved into a new build bungalow in July on an estate of 30 built by a small developer, K H Developments. I was the first one on the estate to move in so I thought the total lack of the documentation I had expected to be given like compliance certificates, user manuals etc. would be made good in due course. Nothing has appeared despite several requests.

I phoned Build-Zone who provide the warranty and found that the builder had not notified them about the completion date (30 June) so no Final Certificate of insurance had been issued. I have received that now and after another request the builder handed over manuals and commissioning certificates for the unvented hot water cylinder and solar thermal system but I can’t verify that the person who signed the certificates is qualified and I haven’t had any compliance certificates for those systems or anything else.

I emailed Shropshire Council Building Control who said that the Final Completion Certificate covers everything, which is hard to believe and I haven’t got one anyway. They also said that a private inspector had handled the building control for the development. Also, I have found mention of a Health and Safety File in internet searches which each new property should have. Is that right?

Missing certificates cost me time and money selling my last property so I don’t want to be in that position again. Does anyone know what paperwork a new home owner should be given by the developer to make sure the property is fully compliant with building control?


New Home Expert

  • Global Moderator
  • Expert
  • *****
  • Posts: 812
  • Country: england
  • Expert advice for new home buyers
    • New Home Blog
Re: Building Control compliance certification
« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2017, 09:15:59 am »
Basically, you should be given either the original or at least a copy of everything on the day you take the keys.  There is no reason for not doing so other than 1) The housebuilder has lost them or 2) They don't exist.  The fact that you legally completed on a new home without a warranty being in place, if you have a mortgage is actually mortgage fraud. CML certificates are required before mortgage funds are released.

I would advise that you submit a Subject Access Request to K H Developments requiring all information they hold on you and your new home.

Finally I always raise an eyebrow when the warranty is not an NHBC warranty, especially if it is a small builder.

For the benefit of others, Build-Zone, according to its website has been providing Structural Warranties (it does NOT cover snagging defects) since 2003. I am not giving it a free link here but feel free to Google its website!
New Home Blog - New Home Expert is committed to providing help and advice for people having issues with their new homes and difficulties with house builders as well as helping potential buyers reduce the risk of possible problems if they do buy.

Tim Fee Snagging Inspector

CleeHillbilly

  • New Member
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Re: Building Control compliance certification
« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2017, 09:00:58 pm »
Thanks for the reply. That is what I thought I should have got in the way of documents.
To be fair to the builder and Build-Zone, the Warranty was in place although only as a cover note and Build-Zone does cover 2 years of defects and 8 years of structural faults similar to NHBC.
There was no mortgage needed. If there had been the lender would probably have demanded all the documentation up front. My conveyancer was a waste of space so she didn't chase it up. But, we are where we are so I now need to chase it up myself. I am not the only one in this position. Three other owners have moved in and no-one has been given the required documents.

I have booked a snagging inspection for next week so I hope the inspector can give me some advice on how to do this as well as picking up the physical snags.
For now I will keep the Subject Access Request as the nuclear option.


New Home Expert

  • Global Moderator
  • Expert
  • *****
  • Posts: 812
  • Country: england
  • Expert advice for new home buyers
    • New Home Blog
Re: Building Control compliance certification
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2017, 06:56:58 am »
Build Zone's website clearly states:

Quote
First 2 years of the policy (New Home Warranty only):

If your home is covered by a New Home Warranty, during the first 2 years it is the Developer’s responsibility to deal with any defects that arise under the terms of the Warranty, and they should be contacted directly if you have any problems. Should the Developer fail to deal with your problem, or become insolvent, then Build-Zone should be contacted to deal with the issue if it relates to Warranty cover

The NHBC say on their website:

Quote
The builder warranty in the first 2 years
The first two years after legal completion of the first purchase of the home is the builder warranty period. If you tell the builder during this period that they have failed to meet the NHBC requirements, they must put this right within a reasonable time.
 
If, after you contact the builder, they do not put things right, please contact us. We offer a resolution service to help and, in certain circumstances, the NHBC guarantee to cover the work the builder should have done.

Build Zone is not, in my opinion, what I would call "cover" in the first two years.
New Home Blog - New Home Expert is committed to providing help and advice for people having issues with their new homes and difficulties with house builders as well as helping potential buyers reduce the risk of possible problems if they do buy.

CleeHillbilly

  • New Member
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Re: Building Control compliance certification
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2017, 09:41:09 pm »
I agree that the Build Zone language is vague and probably unenforceable but the NHBC wording also includes the weasel words "in certain circumstances" before the word "guarantee".

I would like to see the figures for the success rate of homeowners who have tried to get these insurers to step in when they have been shafted by builders. There seems to be a huge conflict of interest when the insurer relies on the builders for its income, but is supposed to represent the interests of homebuyers.

New Home Expert

  • Global Moderator
  • Expert
  • *****
  • Posts: 812
  • Country: england
  • Expert advice for new home buyers
    • New Home Blog
Re: Building Control compliance certification
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2017, 06:55:01 am »
You're not wrong there.

Wouldn't it be refreshing if we had a government that had the courage  to require all warranty providers to publish accurate figures on the number of claims they settle, the number of complaints they receive from buyers of each of the house builders.

As for what you are suggesting the NHBC does indeed provide figures for resolution complaints against housebuilders.  It averages around 70% of complaints are found in favour of the homeowner. But we have to take the NHBC's word for that. The figure ranged from 66.7% in 2010/11 to 71.8% in 2005/06. In 2014/15 and 2015/16 (5,019 complaints made) it was exactly 70%!

As you say, the NHBC slogan is "Raising Standards - Protecting Homeowners"  from what I am seeing on a daily basis, it is clearly failing on both!
New Home Blog - New Home Expert is committed to providing help and advice for people having issues with their new homes and difficulties with house builders as well as helping potential buyers reduce the risk of possible problems if they do buy.

CleeHillbilly

  • New Member
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Re: Building Control compliance certification
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2017, 10:38:36 pm »
I have now found that a large area of the loft, about 6 sq m over the entrance lobby that has no insulation at all. And these bungalows were sold on their energy efficiency!
It is a tricky area to get into so they just haven't bothered. At least one of my neighbours has the same problem, so in all probability all of them have.

My snagging inspection is booked for Tuesday. I will start a new thread under Snagging to give my impressions of that and I will write to my MP to urge the changes you recommend.

New Home Expert

  • Global Moderator
  • Expert
  • *****
  • Posts: 812
  • Country: england
  • Expert advice for new home buyers
    • New Home Blog
Re: Building Control compliance certification
« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2017, 08:32:35 am »
Thank you. Good luck with your snagging inspection.
Looking forward to the feedback.
New Home Blog - New Home Expert is committed to providing help and advice for people having issues with their new homes and difficulties with house builders as well as helping potential buyers reduce the risk of possible problems if they do buy.