EDDC planning leaflet on what to do if build quality of new homes is bad

Cabinet meeting 9 November 2016, 17.30
Agenda Item 10

“Cabinet are asked to defer a decision on recommendation Minute 13 Recommendation 2 “that the Officers consider the resource and
financial implications for EDDC on the production of a leaflet giving advice to purchasers of new homes, on options available to them if issues arise regarding the quality of the build”; until further research has been undertaken by the Service Lead – Planning Strategy and Development Management.”

Click to access 091116combinedcabagenda-sm.pdf

QUESTION: Isn’t Building Control supposed to pick up poor build quality?
QUESTION: Should local authority searches identify poor quality buildings if the local authority knows this is the case?
QUESTION: Where are these poor quality homes and why are they not being identified?

One thought on “EDDC planning leaflet on what to do if build quality of new homes is bad

  1. Building Control is supposed to pick up on major structural issues of poor build quality. But:

    1. Government has allowed developers to outsource this role to private sector companies whose loyalty to the eventual owner is compromised by a. low bidding resulting in insufficient resource to do the job properly; and b. a conflict of interest because the developer is choosing the building control company and is paying the bill. So they don;t have sufficient money to make the number of inspections necessary to ensure a quality build.

    2. Building Control is limited to the building regulations which cover safety related elements of the build i.e. structural, electrical, gas, oil, water safety. Poor quality plastering, carpentry or cheap kitchen units or smaller than average room sizes, baths etc. are not part of Building Regulations and are not covered.

    So I am not sure that we can blame EDDC for this. It is the fault of the government’s privatisation dogma which believes that the private sector is always better than the public sector, but which is naive in the extreme about the compromises of integrity and conflicts of interest that this can entail.

    Public functions like Building Control usually start off as public to regulate issues that arise due to the profit motivation of the private sector causing safety issues. Other public functions like utilities are started because the private sector is unwilling to make the investments in infrastructure necessary. So when public functions were formed by the public sector for a good reason, it is difficult to see why privatising them is likely to have a good long-term outcome.

    Can anyone point to an example of privatisation of public functions which has been healthy in the long-term?

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