DODGY builders who sell incomplete or faulty houses will be slapped with hefty fines of up to £25,000 under a new watchdog, ministers have revealed.
Housing Secretary James Brokenshire today unveiled tough new plans for a Homes Ombudsman, which will hold developers and landlords to account.
Ministers will pass new laws to force developers of any new build homes to sign up to it in future.
Mr Brokenshire said today: “This new watchdog will champion home buyers, protect their interests and hold developers to account.
“And give confidence that when you get the keys to a new home you get the quality build you expect and the finish you’ve paid for.”
Earlier this year housing giant Bovis was blasted for misleading buyers and delaying repairs on poorly-built homes.
The company, which builds around 3,500 homes each year, apologised after hundreds of customers complained about the quality of their homes.
Pipes were not fitted properly, air bricks were half buried, walls were not sound, and the ground not level when home owners moved in, one whistleblower said.
The housing giant has sold 17,000 houses in the last five years yielding profits of more than £650million.
“We will fix our broken housing market and make it work for you,” Mr Brokenshire said earlier today.
Theresa May has long promised to do more to help Brits with housing, insisting people were right to be “angry” abut the lack of homes.
After a consultation which concluded earlier this year, the new service will cover renters and buyers in the market – and will mean there’s just one place to go to for consumers to complain to when things go wrong.
At the moment the Housing Ombudsman Service looks at complaints about registered providers of social housing, for example housing associations, and other landlords, managers and agents.
The All Party Parliamentary Group for Excellence in the Built Environment in a report back in June.
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Mr Brokenshire also used his speech to express how he wants “generation rent” to become “generation own” under Tory housing reforms, as he confirmed he will push forward plans to allow property-owners to build upwards more easily.
Councils will be able to sell off land at cheaper than market value rates to allow new homes to be built.
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