Author Topic: New build flat problems denied by developer  (Read 2046 times)

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New build flat problems denied by developer
« on: April 10, 2019, 11:50:44 pm »
It has been more than a year that we started reporting problems to the developer of our new build flat; some of them has been addressed, others ignored or neglected. I would like, if possible, to have a more professional opinion on those points.

The outstanding problems are:
  • Weak floating floor, with uneven areas ( 6-8mm slopes measured with a 2m level)
  • Incredible vibration of the washing machine (due to the weak floating floor) that propagate 4/5m away
  • Windows that don't close properly
  • Strange brown material coming from one of the windows frame
  • Creaking floor in the bedroom
  • Uneven insulation on some walls (measured with a thermal camera)
  • Poor sound insulation

The developer already said that everything has been sorted and his surveyor denies these problems; so we escalated them to the insurance company.
Now the insurer (Check-mate) don't do anything but report our points to the developer's surveyor who comments that everything is fine.

I attach some pictures that we sent them for the above problems.

As even the insurance company is ignoring these points what could be a more effective path?
Which kind of extra evidence can we gather?
As our opinions seem not enough should we hire another surveyor to send a more effective report?

Thanks for your time,
Kind regards

New Home Expert

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Re: New build flat problems denied by developer
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2019, 05:53:58 am »
Reading through your post it had all the hallmarks of Taylor Wimpey flat except when I learned you have Checkmate warranty according to them at least "Delivering a step change to the UK latent defects new home warranty market" 
I have a very different opinion. 
I always advise new home buyers to make sure they have an NHBC warranty. This is by no means perfect and offers very little to homeowners in my opinion. Having said that, despite its connections and close ties with the industry, it can help buyers far more than any other warranty provider. 
Perhaps this is why the NHBC provide 80% of new home warranties.

My view is you are wasting your time with Checkmate.
You could lodge a complaint with the Financial Services Ombudsman which if nothing else would mean they would have to defend their actions and it would be a matter of public record ie a warning for help others.

As for your defects - please name this builder!

The floating floor will follow the camber of the PCC floor sections. So 8mm difference in level across the span would be usual. The builder could have pre levelled the floor sections before laying the floating floor.

Washing machines are a nuisance for flat owners. I suspect the machine itself is either not properly levelled or your washing load is too much or the machine is not evenly distributing it before spinning.
As it is simple to fix I am surprised the builder has not levelled it for you or your neighbour below complained to you!

Window not closing can be easily adjust and I cant think why the builder has not done this. It is a matter of turning the locking pin with an allen key to loosen of tighten.

Brown material is expanding foam used to fill gaps when fitting. It can be cleaned off if on the surface.

Creaking floor in the bedroom probably caused by uneven floor and your bed compressing it over the floor bed camber meaning the edges are pinned to the skirtings. Bit of a guess as a proper inspection would be required.

Insulation missing or not fully in place is indisputable with thermal imaging camera evidence. You may need an independent survey if you wish to take legal action against your housebuilder.

Poor sound insulation. Again an acoustic specialist would need to conduct tests in your and your neighbours flats.

I suggest you contact Tim Fee 07768 900200 of "Snagging Inspections" if you would like your home professionally snagged and inspected. There is only so much anyone can advise without seeing the home.
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.


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Re: New build flat problems denied by developer
« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2019, 11:50:31 am »
Thanks for the reply and the contact, I'll give him a call.

The builder's name is "New vision construction Ltd", unfortunately, quite an unknown group.
Using the Ombudsman or taking legal action seems probably the only solution at this point.

Regarding the issues:
Floating floor: so this is something normal? or we can have it fixed?
The developer's surveyor said that a 4mm elasticity is within tolerance, but we are clearly above that.

Washing machine:
It has been leveled multiple times from different people but the result is always the same, everything shakes quite badly with 4-5 metres from it (especially the fridge directly nearby); it could be the model of the washing machine or as we are guessing the weak floating floor. But Check-mate refuse to consider the point as it's a white-good

I thought the same, but they always refuse to have a proper look at them; also they never give us the name of the brand that made us suspicious that is a lower quality knockoff and an issue not easily adjustable

Brown material:
Is coming within the frames of the windows itself, so could be some kind of isolation of the window coming out?

Sound insulation:
Is always been an issue as we can clearly hear the owners of the floor underneath chatting and more annoyingly the music of the pub 3 floors down as the buildings are connected and the sound propagates through the whole building by its walls. They send us the sound report done that state a result of 0 compared to the limit and our specific flat was not tested.

For the other points, we'll make contact with a snagger or an RICS surveyor to have them properly inspected.



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Re: New build flat problems denied by developer
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2019, 03:22:41 pm »
To measure the the floor you need to place a 20mm ( or similar )  packer at each end of the level . Measure the centre  as you have done it should be between 15 - 25 mm or + / - 5mm .