Snagging Stories

Bland Designs! Ridiculous structural fails including a balcony with no FLOOR and taps above plug sockets that surely got the builders sacked

Avant-garde architecture is always to be applauded, but sometimes innovation can go a little too far. Bored Panda has compiled an album full of architectural design fails and though they might be funny, they look pretty dangerous too. From taps above electricity sockets to a wall painted with a convincing tunnel that led to a […]

‘Don’t waste your money on ‘shoddy’ new builds’: Kirstie Allsopp warns buyers not to be fooled by ‘misleading’ claims about the ‘hidden costs’ of old houses

A row has erupted over the quality of new build homes after TV presenter Kirstie Allsopp told today’s buyers to avoid wasting their money on ‘shoddy’ properties. The Location, Location, Location presenter claimed some houses built from the late 1980s are poor quality, more prone to flooding and built for the short term. The 45-year-old […]

Housing associations face storm of complaints over new-build homes

Housing associations responsible for more than 175,000 homes are facing allegations of serial neglect of their residents and properties, focused on an array of new-build developments in London that have received more than £60m in public money. The issues uncovered by a Guardian investigation include damp, mould, nonexistent security, outages in heating and hot water, […]

Families living in new homes slash fuel bills by half

A new home built to the latest building regulations can cost half as much to heat as a Victorian house of the same size, according to a new report by the NHBC Foundation. The advantages of new homes is based on a survey of 2,000 people who had recently moved into a new home and […]

Reality Check: What is affordable housing?

Chancellor Phillip Hammond is expected to announce policies in the Autumn Statement aimed at tackling the problem. In January, then Prime Minister David Cameron said government would step in and directly commission thousands of new affordable homes. He pledged £1.2bn over the next five years to build affordable starter homes. But what do we mean […]

Harron Homes left us hanging for months over our half-built house

We agreed to purchase a new £240,000 house from Harron Homes in December 2015. We paid a deposit in January 2016 and were told the house would be ready towards the end of May. Unfortunately, May came and went, as did June, July, August, September, October and November. Over that time we were constantly given […]

Housebuilder Bovis Homes apologises to customers at Queens Hills and Round Hosue Park developments

Customers have told of how when they picked up the keys to their dream homes they discovered a string of issues and work unfinished – leading a housebuilder to apologise. A young couple finding their home was missing its oven and a mum having to make an 18-mile trip to do her washing are among […]

New-build leaseholders caught in property trap: What you need to know

A growing number of home buyers are finding they are the being stung by onerous ground rent agreements written into the terms of their leasehold. That can mean they find it near-impossible to sell their properties and, if they fail to keep up the payments, their homes can be seized. Sebastian O’Kelly from the Leasehold […]

Housebuilder paid £3,000 ‘bribes’ to persuade buyers to move into unfinished homes in desperate bid to inflate sales

One of Britain’s biggest builders has admitted offering housebuyers thousands of pounds to persuade them to move into unfinished homes in a desperate bid to hit sales targets. Bovis Homes, whose chief executive left abruptly on Monday, was willing to pay its customers as much as £3,000 to complete deals by December 23 – even […]

Bovis accused of pressuring buyers to move into unfinished homes

House builder, which issued a profit warning in late December, says no buyers were forced to move in before Christmas Bovis Homes has been accused of pressuring customers to move into unfinished houses before Christmas by offering them cash incentives, a week before it issued a profit warning. Several Bovis customers said they had been […]

Homeowner unable to sell house after bungle means neighbour owns half of her bedroom

Samantha Sweeney, 45, was stunned to learn 90sq ft overhangs the shared driveway between their houses. Samantha Sweeney told of the hell of being unable sell her house — as her neighbour owns half of her bedroom This graphic shows how the plans should look and how the bedroom is unfortunately divided between both neighbours […]

A new-build may not offer a guarantee of serenity

The warranties covering these homes are failing to deliver on their promises, say homeowners The government’s ambitious target of building one million new homes by 2020 depends on buyers being able to trust that their new homes are built to a high standard and that any faults will be dealt with efficiently. That trust, however, […]

‘No one is taking any responsibility for my home’

After our report on the state of many new-build developments, Times readers share their tales of woes Our article last week about problems with warranties for new-builds has triggered a huge response from readers who have regaled us with stories of their long-standing battles to fix defects in their new homes. Their anger is directed […]

New homes warranty firm pays millions to leading homebuilders

Construction standards and credibility questioned after it emerges National House Building Council pays developers up to £15m a year The organisation that provides warranties for most of the new homes in Britain is paying millions of pounds to the leading housebuilders every year, raising questions about its independence and credibility amid a wave of complaints […]

Directors of new homes warranty firm criticised for lack of independence

NHBC insists it adopts ‘highest principles of UK governance’ amid claims it is on side of developers rather then buyers Two of the directors of the organisation that sets the standards for new UK homes and provides warranties for buyers cannot be classed as independent because of their links to leading housebuilders, it has emerged. […]

Ombudsman needed for faulty homes

Calls for the creation of an ombudsman to protect homeowners from sub-standard new houses are intensifying after concerns emerged over the independence of the biggest warranty provider. Oliver Colvile, the Conservative MP who chairs an all-party parliamentary group for new builds, said that he was seeking a meeting with Gavin Barwell, housing minister, to promote […]

How buying a Bovis home came with hundreds of snags

When Helen Batt went to view her recently purchased £389,995 Bovis-built home in Maidstone, Kent, for the first time before Christmas, she was expecting to see a spanking new four-bedroom house. Instead, the property in the Orchard Fields development was barely finished and littered with rubbish – two days before the scheduled completion date of […]

New home owners gagged over poor build and compensation claims

NHBC forcing buyers to sign agreement preventing them from contacting media about problems with their property or discussing with neighbours New home owners are being forced to sign gagging orders after making successful claims for compensation about the quality of their new homes. The Guardian has been made aware of NHBC, the regulator of new […]

NHBC ‘gagging orders’ claim symbolises construction industry’s “structural flaws”, suggests Farmer Review author

The NHBC has come under fire for allegedly using gagging orders to stop homeowners speaking out about poor build quality in new homes; an allegation the warranty provider has denied. A report in the Guardian, yesterday, accused the NHBC of seeking to silence homeowners making successful compensation claims through its Buildmark warranty insurance scheme. The […]

Bovis to pay £7m to compensate customers for poorly built homes

Bovis Homes is to pay £7m to repair poorly built new homes sold to customers, raising fresh questions about the standards of new-build properties across the country and the regulation of the market. The company – one of the biggest housebuilders builders in Britain – will pay compensation after angry customers formed a Facebook group […]