Along with notifying Keepmoat Homes we also notified the NHBC of our complaint. We thought that maybe they may be able to take some action against Keepmoat – the NHBC just “reminded them of their obligations under the Consumer Code“. Wow, just wow, we’re sure that really provoked Keepmoat not to play the same stunts with another customer.
After receiving the data under our Subject Access Request we was tempted to contact the NHBC again, but then we realised that it would be a waste of our time.
The NHBC will not provide any support as we did not buy a house – we need to a have policy reference number which you only get when you buy a house. Their suggestion is to take the matter through the Independent Dispute Resolution Scheme provider which is run by IDRS Ltd and is called the Consumer Code for Home Builders Adjudication Scheme. To bring a case through them costs £100 + VAT. As Keepmoat Homes have already offered to cover our costs there seems little point in going down this route (unless we want to waste £100+ for the hell of it). But what I find startling is that the Consumer Code for Home Builders is there to provide protection for consumers from mis-selling and make the buying process easier because consumers should be given clear and accurate information from the start except that is if you don’t actually complete the sale. But many customers would walk away from a sale if they had been mis-sold. Also if a customer decides to go ahead with the purchase this would probably invalidate any claim with the warranty provider or Adjudication scheme. I suspect they would say to the purchaser that they had the opportunity to pull out of the sale but chose not to therefore they are not entitled to any compensation as it is deemed that they have accepted the house as is or any other specifications related to the development. This equates to the Consumer Code just being a piece of paper with nice words on but with no real meaning.
We have tried to get Keepmoat to investigate our complaint (going through several layers of Management including emailing one of the Managing Directors), the NHBC and even the police (we have notified them of an irregularity we found under the SAR). We have notified the Regional Managing Director of the irregularities in the reservation forms, this email was just ignored. The sad reality is that a company the size of Keepmoat Homes can do what they want to who they want, nobody cares. The NHBC are a toothless organisation who will do nothing. It makes us wonder if the 10 year warranties house builders offer through the NHBC are worth the paper they are written on?
Further reading: Here are some links to cases which the Adjudication Scheme has ruled on. They give some brief details of the cases along with whether the claim by the house purchase/or potential house purchase was upheld and what compensation was paid.