Following the shocking NAEA report that highlighted the mis-selling and disguising of leasehold property as freehold, the Property Ombudsman is pleading with the Government to bring new build property under the umbrella of consumer redress.
Currently, new build property is not covered by The Property Ombudsman or the Property Redress Scheme. The implication for people unhappy with their new build property, could mean that they have no official forum to raise their concerns.
In recent months, the property ombudsman has actively targeted the Government to consider this issue in the hope that new build customers are given a voice.
The Property Ombudsman said that new home owners: “have nowhere to seek redress to provide a better housing market for all; it’s a scandal that needs to be sorted.”
As far back as February, The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government carried out an eight-week consultation on redress issues in the housing sector. However, six months have passed, and we still await Governmental conclusions and amendments to the redress process.
Sajid Javid, Former Housing Secretary and current Home Secretary, commented in February: “For too long, tenants and homeowners have navigated multiple complaints procedures to resolve disputes about everyday household repairs and maintenance.
“Fixing this housing crisis is about more than just building homes, it’s ensuring people have the answers available when something goes wrong.
“Today’s top-to-bottom review shows the Government is working hard to deliver a better and simpler system.
“In the private rented sector, there is currently no obligation for landlords to register with a complaints system and this can often leave thousands who do not use a property agent without any option for redress”
“House builders are responsible for fixing incomplete work in new build homes but when this does not happen many consumers with snagging issues can find that they have nowhere left to turn.
“This is just one of the steps the Government is taking to solve the country’s housing crisis and improve the rental sector which 8.6 million households are part of”
The fact that new build owners are still waiting for the consultation findings will frustrate many people looking for help.
When 94% of leasehold respondents have concluded they were unhappy and mis-sold the property because of ambiguous language, it seems imperative that a structured redress system is in place to give disgruntled and distraught home owners a legitimate voice and outlet for their concerns.
Do you think that a clear redress system will appease and reassure new build home owners? Should all property professionals be held accountable to redress systems? Should more be done to protect home owners?