New Build: Defects and issues with my new build property


You have the keys to your new property and you begin to unpack your belongings to get settled into your brand new home but wait, you spot something out the corner of your eye…is that a dent in the work surface, why won’t my bedroom door close?

Unfortunately, you have stumbled across some issues with your new property however, do not despair we have written a helpful guide to help you deal with any defects.

What happens if I find defects in my new house?


There is an informal and a formal approach. We would strongly recommend the informal approach initially and most builders are anxious to deal with any defects.

The informal process is contacting the builder either through the site office or though their Customer Care department and providing them with the details of your concerns. The table below provides a very helpful division of problems.

If the informal approach is unsuccessful, and you believe the problems persist, then you can follow the formal process stipulated by your guarantee.

Your new home will have the benefit of a guarantee issued by the National House Building Council (NHBC) or an insurance company. These guarantees cover two elements; the first element will deal with defects in the property commonly known as "snagging" and the second element of the guarantee will deal with structural aspects.

What types of defects are covered by the guarantee?

Generally, the larger the builder the more organised and efficient they are in dealing with the defect. There are three ways in which the defects can be categorised;

Type of defect Explanation Example
Obvious Defect These are issues relating to items not working. For example, light switches not working, bedroom door not closing correctly and cracked tiles.
Repair Defect These are defects which arise within 2 years of the property being built. Cracks appearing on the outside of the property, issues with wiring and water pressure.
Structural Defect These are defects which affect the structure of the property which occur within the first 10 years of the property being built. Issues with the foundations or subsidence.

What defects are not covered by the guarantee?


Any issues relating to the “settling” of the property will not be covered by the guarantee for example; settlement cracks, general wear and tear and condensation.

For more information relating to what is and is not covered by the guarantee, please visit Here

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