Home BLA Scotland MSP to take forward bill to improve protection for home buyers

MSP to take forward bill to improve protection for home buyers

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CIH Scotland responds to social securityA final proposal for a member’s bill to improve protection for people who purchase a new-build home has been lodged at the Scottish Parliament.

Graham Simpson MSP submitted a draft proposal in April for a bill to establish standard missives for the sale of new-build homes, including redress for purchasers in respect of defects in construction.

The proposal was accompanied by a consultation document which had a closing date of June 27.

Mr Simpson said the proposed New-Build Homes (Buyer Protection) (Scotland) Bill aims to create additional safeguards for those purchasing new-build homes. This is to be achieved in two ways – through the introduction of statutory standardised clauses in builders’ missives for new-build homes and through provision for a clear, statutory route for redress for all new-build homebuyers in the event of a serious defect in the property.

The Conservative MSP said a substantial majority of consultation respondents were in favour of the main aims of the bill. There was slightly less support for the suggestion that new homebuyers should have the right to carry out a full survey of their home before committing to its ownership, with several respondents questioning how this would work in practice.

Additionally, a question on the most appropriate timescale for a builders’ warranty generated mixed views, with no one timeframe being favoured. Respondents to the consultation fell largely into two categories –members of the public (many of whom are new-build homeowners) and commercial building organisations and their representative bodies.

A large majority of individual respondents were in favour of the proposed bill, citing the need for increased protections for homebuyers and a means of redress should a home be found to be defective. The commercial organisations and representative bodies, on the other hand, were mainly opposed to the bill, expressing concern that it would have a negative effect on the building trade and citing the numerous protections which are already in place for consumers.

Graham Simpson said the responses have shown that “there is a problem that needs to be addressed”.

“The question is, should we tackle this imbalance through legislation or allow the industry to self-police as has been the case until now,” he added.

Mr Simpson has now lodged his final proposal, accompanied by a consultation summary and has one month to get MSP support.

Date; 1st of October 2019

Source; Scottish Housing News

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