From June 2023 all new reservations placed with East Anglia-based housebuilder Denbury Homes will be covered by the New Homes Quality Board’s new Code of Practice. The Code was introduced last year to provide greater clarity and guidance to customers.
The new Code of Practice is voluntary, Denbury Homes has opted to adopt it as it gives customers greater clarity and understanding of the expectations and requirements they should have of their homebuilder. This will reassure customers that they will receive a high level of support from Denbury Homes both before and after the sale, and explains options if expectations aren’t met.
Sara Raven, Director of Sales & Marketing at Denbury Homes said: “This is a very positive step for our customers. We are proud of our already high levels of customer satisfaction and our ranking as a five-star builder – in a recent survey Denbury Homes was awarded a 93.8% customer satisfaction rating – so this feels like a natural step for us. The Code sets out very clearly, and in one place, what our commitments are during the sales process and in terms of aftercare.”
The New Homes Quality Board (NHQB), a non-profit body, is overseeing the new Code. The Code covers every aspect of a new home purchase, from the initial sales office visit to the end of the two-year warranty. Under the Code, housebuilders must also have an effective after-care service to address any issues.
Housebuilders will also be required to have in place a robust complaints process, responding to customers in a timely fashion and to their satisfaction.
Sara continues: “Our after-care team is already on hand to support customers in the period after they move into their new home – from questions about the home’s systems such as heating, to minor snags and anything else that might crop up. This new Code just provides a clearer guide for customers as to how their enquiries, and complaints, will be dealt with, the timescales they can expect each step to be completed by and the next steps available should they feel they need to escalate the issue.
“Of course, we hope that this sort of issue doesn’t come up but purchasing a new home is a major step for buyers and we’d like them to feel as reassured and confident as possible that either ourselves, or the independent ombudsman, are available to address any difficulties.”
As well as stipulations around after care provision, the new Code:
- Protects vulnerable customers, prohibits high pressure selling; requires any deposits the customer pays to their builder to be protected.
- Requires the developer to provide all relevant information about the home during the sales process – including its tenure and any future management or service charges – allowing them to make an informed decision about their purchase.
- Sets out requirements for a fair reservation agreement, including a ‘cooling off’ period; and sales contract requirements.
- Allows customers to have a professional carry out a pre-completion inspection of their home.
- Specifies that a home must be ‘complete’ prior to move in.
Denbury Homes reservations made prior to 5th June 2023 will be covered by the existing Consumer Code for Home Builders. Peal Estates, which owns Denbury Homes’ development at Thurston Park, will also continue with the existing Consumer Code for Home Builders.
Sara finishes: “Our sales team will be ready to guide customers under the new Code and there will be copies of the Code available in all sales offices for potential purchasers to read.”
Visit https://www.denburyhomes.co.uk/about/consumer-codes/the-new-homes-quality-code/ to find out more.