The All Party Parliamentary Group for Excellence in the Built Environment (APPGEBE) is pleased to announce its sixth Inquiry, which will look into the potential and detail for a New Homes Ombudsman.
As the Government seeks to increase housebuilding, it is essential that we not only build more homes, but ensure that they are of the highest quality and that customer satisfaction is of the highest levels.
In gathering evidence on the quality of new homes for our 2016 report, More homes, fewer complaints it became highly apparent that consumers had inadequate redress to sort out problems they were encountering with new homes. As a result, our main recommendation from that Inquiry was to set up a New Homes Ombudsman. The idea has been very well received and we would like to explore it further in our next Inquiry.
In particular, we are looking for evidence on:
- Current complaints procedures for purchasers of new homes, including how they work, what works well and their limitations
- The potential scope for a New Homes Ombudsman and how it could work in practice
- How could a new position be funded by the home building sector and what would be the alternative?
- What could a New Homes Ombudsman learn from similar schemes already in operation, including for example, The Property Ombudsman, The Housing Ombudsman, The Financial Ombudsman and The Energy Ombudsman, amongst others.
The APPG for Excellence in the Built Environment calls upon organisations, businesses and individuals to provide evidence in the form of written submissions by Friday, 22 December 2017. They should be of reasonable length and possess a clear conclusion and recommendations for action. They should be sent electronically to the APPGEBE to Ktomaszewska@cic.org.uk .
"As the Government embarks on an ambitious programme of housebuilding, it is more important than ever that individuals have protection for and redress over, probably their largest lifetime purchase. I therefore look forward to working with the committee to explore the possibilities that a New Homes Ombudsman could bring and how we can improve the current position for all concerned", said Jo Churchill MP of the Inquiry.
The APPGEBE Commission of Inquiry comprises members of both Houses of Parliament, senior members of the construction professions, key influencers and decision makers in other aspects of society. It will be co-chaired by Jo Churchill, Member of Parliament for Bury St Edmunds and the Earl of Lytton.