The Consumer Code for Home Builders
The Consumer Code for Home Builders (the Code) is a set of requirements which home builders must meet, in order to achieve the core aims of the industry led scheme; to provide protection and rights to new home purchasers.
These are accomplished through the encouragement and enhancement of transparency throughout a conveyancing transaction, thus enabling new buyers to make fully informed decisions with regard to their purchase.
Who does the Code apply to?
The Code applies to any ‘Home Builder’, defined as a ‘builder or developer of a new or newly converted Home for sale to the public’, who is also registered with a Home Warranty Body. For example, those registered with large warranty providers such as NHBC, Premier Guarantee, LABC Warranty and Checkmate.
Compulsory compliance with the Code typically takes its form as a registration condition with such Bodies. This means that the requirements are mandatory and strict sanctions can be imposed for any breaches of non-compliance. Below are some of the key Code requirements.
Requirement 2.6: Reservation
Requirement 2.6 of the Code deals with terms which must be included in a Reservation Agreement such as outlining what is being sold, the Reservation fee and the purchase price.
It’s crucial to note here that upon cancellation of the Reservation Agreement, the Reservation fee must be refunded in full to the purchaser, subject to any reasonable deductions by the home builder for incurred costs surrounding the processing of that sale. These potential deductions must be addressed at the time of Reservation.
Requirement 3.2: Timing of Construction, Completion and Handover
This requirement sets out that the purchaser must be given ‘reliable and realistic’ information in relation to the above, which includes an anticipated date of Legal Completion. This should be in accordance with both the information previously supplied to the home buyer and in line with the true progression of the build.
If you would like more information in relation to the Consumer Code for Home Builders, please contact our Residential Property team on 0113 207 0000.