No date for New Homes Ombudsman with voluntary version on the cards

No date for New Homes Ombudsman with voluntary version on the cards

 

And it appears consumers may only have the support of a voluntary industry-supported scheme initially.

The ombudsman scheme was announced in February with powers to ban rogue developers and order builders to carry out remedial work.

Housebuilders will be obliged to join the ombudsman so all homebuyers can get issues resolved and developers will be forced to pay compensation for substandard finishes on homes.

However, despite the industry-based New Homes Quality Board launching in May and setting a target of the start of 2021 to have the ombudsman in place, the government has still not confirmed a date.

Conservative MP for Romsey Caroline Noakes asked the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) by what date the ombudsman will be established and taking on cases.

MHCLG parliamentary under-secretary Kelly Tolhurst MP noted that the draft Building Safety Bill published on 20 July 2020 includes provision for the New Homes Ombudsman scheme.

“The legislation has finished pre-legislative scrutiny and we are considering the Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committees’ recommendations,” she said.

“Alongside introducing legislation, we continue to stay in touch with the industry-led New Homes Quality Board to consider the appointment of a voluntary New Homes Ombudsman scheme.”