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Property built by builder not NHBC registered – what survey should I get?

  1. John from Manchester
  2. Surveys questions and answers

Question

I am hoping to buy a newly built property without a mortgage but I understand the builder was not NHBC registered. I have asked my solicitor what protection is available for insurance and warranties but I don’t know which survey I should get.

Answer

For the survey you should get, I would talk it through with the surveyor you choose to appoint. It may be that a HomeBuyer Report would suffice, but I suspect, as the builder of the property was not NHBC registered, you may be better served by a full Building Survey.  
 
It is not uncommon for smaller private developers not be registered with NHBC – but this does not mean that their product would be automatically inferior. For a new build property, if the developer is not NHBC registered, then ordinarily they should supply either an equivalent 10 year Zurich Insurance for the construction, or an Architect Certificate, signed off by the Architect to confirm that the building construction has been supervised.
 
Provided that either of these two alternatives to an NHBC are provided to you, then there should be no issues upon resale. If however, the Builder cannot/will not provide either of these, then I would recommend that you seriously consider walking away from it. Without any form of warranty, the property is unlikely to offer satisfactory security as far as a lender is concerned and is likely to be unmortgageable and would continue to be so, for a period of 10 years from the date of its completion. 

Gavin Scott-Brooker

Gavin Scott-Brooker

Brooker & Co

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