The Queen’s Speech made only one direct mention of the housing market when it revealed yesterday that the government intends to enact legislation to create a New Homes Ombudsman during the next parliament.
This new ombudsman would arbitrate between unhappy new home buyers and builder. In particular, it would require house builders to reimburse customers for (or repair) shoddily-built homes. But without a working majority, there is some doubt whether many of the government’s proposals will see the light of day.
Nevertheless the initiative has been welcomed by NAEA Propertymark, whose Chief Executive Mark Hayward (left) says: “The irony of buying a shiny brand new home and finding yourself dealing with a number of snagging issues, with no easy path of redress, is not lost on consumers.
“There should be a statutory requirement to belong to a New Homes Ombudsman and the remit should be UK wide. Property developers should be charged per unit, ensuring that the access is free for customers.”
But the Queen’s speech was glaring in its omissions and many promised initiatives appear to have been put on the back burner for the time being.
“Disappointing to see that the state of the UK property market failed to make the cut for today’s speech,” says Tom Gatzen of room sharing platform IdealFlatmate (left).
Much discussed policies omitted from the Queen’s speech include the ongoing housing crisis, the ROPA-recommended minimum qualifications for estate agents, reform of the leasehold system, banning Section 21 evictions and compulsory three year tenancies.