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Snagging and defects / Re: New Build Brickwork
« Last Post by New Home Expert on July 10, 2019, 08:31:15 am »
First of all who is your housebuilder?  I'm guessing Persimmon.
This is particularly relevant as a recent post pulled out of the sale having paid thousands for extras and had to go down the legal route to get some of the money refunded, even though the house wasn't built.

Looking at your photo, the brickwork is at best a mess. there is evidence of a complete lack of care and a jet wash should never be necessary if care a skill is taken.

I would question, why were the four bricks were removed?
Looking at the staining, it does seem that the cavity is blocked or weep holes missing in places.

The mortar banding will actually weather down a bit, but is does indicate either an inconsistency of mortar mix, something you SHOULD BE VERY CONCERNED ABOUT!    or that remedial re pointing has been carried out with a stronger mortar mix (ie a higher cement content)

As for mortar easily falling away powdering when scraped across se the link above, it could be a weak mortar mix and will be no end of hassle for you getting this put right even if you do have an NHBC warranty.
Snagging and defects / New Build Brickwork
« Last Post by Padge2001 on July 10, 2019, 12:30:02 am »
New poster looking in desperate need of advice

We are currently in the process of purchasing a new build property off-plan. The house is currently being constructed but we are increasingly unhappy with the seemingly poor quality of the brickwork as there are a number of areas on the side of the property which appear to be discoloured and where the work looks incredibly untidy. I have attached an image

There are also pockets where the mortar is darker lower down and can be scratched away.

Are we right to be concerned?

The builder is stating that this is part of the drying out process and that the colours will naturally harmonise but this sounds implausibly. They have also stated that they are still to jet wash the exterior and that this will improve the appearance.

We have yet to exchange, though we have paid a reservation fee of £500 (half of which is refundable) and a contribution towards "extras" which was a few thousand pounds. Although it is still early stages, if we were to decide not to proceed, is there any recourse to get this back.

I will be speaking to the site manager next week

Many thanks in advance for any help
No. It is sound transference which you should not be able to hear.
Good luck with Taylor Wonkey!
It is always worth paying for a thorough snagging inspection.
This should be carried out BEFORE you legally complete.
1) The housebuilder can deal with any issues more easily and has unfettered access.
2) You are not inconvenienced by remedial works
3) The builder is more motivated to do the works because he wants the money.

Nevertheless, if you are worried it is wise to get a professional inspect your home. You may not like what he finds and the builder may say any damage was done post occupation - a common response.
Snagging and defects / Re: New Home purchase - PLEASE HELP!
« Last Post by New Home Expert on July 09, 2019, 07:44:40 am »
First of all, the problems you have "should" be covered under the warranty. 
The bad news is this is a warranty primarily for the builder so he is indemnified for cost of putting his work right.

However, you must go through the warranty and make a claim and get them to inspect and survey what is wrong and what needs to be done.  If nothing else, it lodges the drainage defects that may result in an expensive underpinning claim further down the line.

If you were to sell the home, you would be duty bond to tell the buyer of existing issues and previous remedial works and any warranty on it.

Who is the housebuilder?  A warning signs for you were:
1) No NHBC warranty and 2) the house was finished months before you bought it, why so long to sell?
I moved into a new build just over a week ago.
I was wondering if it's worth paying for professional snagging inspection?
I haven't noticed anything major myself - just some paint work that is messy, but I am also experiencing a lot of noise transference through the wall, which is really starting to get annoying.
Many thanks for your advice.

I have since figured out that the noise is actually coming through an adjoining wall. It's low vibrational sound - basically every step my neighbour takes is audible, even though he is only wearing socks. There's also some air born sound too, I can hear light switches and crockery occasionally.

Will this make any difference to how I ought to approach the matter with Taylor Wimpey?

Snagging and defects / Semi detached house failed sound test
« Last Post by Gillete on July 08, 2019, 02:00:41 pm »
We purchased a new build semi town house from Avant homes last year. The snagging list is ongoing and something I fully understand with any new build property, however there has also been some defects and 2 non compliances of building regulations (no insulation in dormer roofs/cheeks rectified).
We have suffered a year of listening to our neighbours telephone conversations and had to move to a different bedroom after being kept awake by snoring. Avant assured me the party wall was built as per spec and I drilled the wall to find that it was indeed insulated with rock wool between the blockwork. We eventually asked the builder to provide a sound test as we were going mad listening to neighbour 24/7. The sound test took place 8 weeks ago and Avant have refused to comment. I have sent a form requesting all information they have as part of GDPR and I'm awaiting the mountain of data to be sent.
I have found out (I won't reveal how) that the party wall failed the sound test and does not conform to the required standard.
Does anyone have any idea what my options are?
Snagging and defects / New Home purchase - PLEASE HELP!
« Last Post by Tired247 on July 08, 2019, 01:46:54 pm »

Very glad to have found this forum. In a very tricky position. To quickly summarise:

We bought a new family house in November 2018, which was newly built and completed mid-2017.
We had a routine mortgage survey and were given new electric and gas certifications, plus a 10-year structural warranty. We didn't do any further in-depth surveys (FIRST MISTAKE).

We moved in and quickly noticed a few issues - the underfloor heating system didn't seem to work very well. We asked a plumber to come and have a look.
This triggered a cascade of workmen visiting the house and uncovering issue after issue.

The full list:
Electrics: combustible DB, unbonded pipes, multiple non-earthed outlets, neutral and main cabling separated coming through the house, unsupported and unsafe wiring in the plant room
Gas: water valve placed instead of gas valve, leaking underfloor heating manifold
Drainage: initially thought to be blocked by builders waste (See below), the vent is below the roofline (against regs)
Guttering: full of these weird bird spikes, overflow constantly and leaking joints
Floor: wrong type of grout, loose floor tiles
Landscaping: cement used for garden wall and patio completely eroded away, dip in drive (see below!)

Essentially the electric and gas certificates were falsely signed off, and the house was fairly poorly done.
So I spent £5,000 fixing all the urgently stuff (mostly electrics and gas) then took it back to the builder. After a bit of tussle involving small claims mediation we settled on £3,000 being paid back (he took issue with my fixing it all first, even though they were C1 electrical errors and I had toddlers here, plus I couldn't justify the time and effort on top of going to full blown court. (another mistake?)

So this week the drains blocked AGAIN. This time a different engineer came round - he immediately spotted the external vents were not meeting building regulation, and I filled him in a bit on the above. When he looked in the drains it was bad news:
1) There is a uncapped outlet pipe which is open to the foundations, leaking water and waste directly in there, and also eroding the ground away into the drain, hence blocking it.
2) There is a crack in the rain pipe leaking water, again likely through the foundation, pulling stones and screed into that drain as well
3) The fall on the outside pipe is wrong and water is pooling back towards the garden
4) The pipe is obstructed by a dropped pipe next door which would've been constructed by the same contractor

Structurally I hadn't re-ordered a full survey, but now am reconsidering my options. Everything so far points to a very poor construction job with little regard for the final product and somehow managed to squeeze through a building inspection (I am suspicious of this).
The warranty has 8 years left on it. I now have great doubts about the foundations and structure of the house in general, and likely other issues with drains that I can't see currently.

The way I see it I have two ways to move forward:
1) Keep the house, attempt to identify ALL structural and other issues through re-inspection and the warranty (with ICW), take the developer/contractor back to court etc if needed to get it all fixed. Hope there aren't even more major hidden issues down the line.
2) Fix everything I know about currently (the leaking rain drain essentially, having re-done electric and gas certificates already) and then do up the house to sell on ASAP.

I really don't know how to weigh up or move forward from here, and am worried I will mis-step costing me thousands if not hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Any help or advice at all would be greatly appreciated!!
Snagging and defects / Re: Being blamed for snags
« Last Post by New Home Expert on July 08, 2019, 06:09:45 am »
The whole house is covered by the NHBC 10-year warranty and under the warranty, Redrow are responsible for fixing any defects in the first two years.
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