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nhbc buildmark policy

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After 6 years of fighting the NHBC they are now trying to force us to accept their decision to implement a ludicrous repair, even though we have proven the following:

1. crib wall not built in accordance with British Standard

2. crib wall structural loading is outwith the maximum allowable as specified in design calculations.

3. crib wall has suffered multiple failures

4. the wall was damaged by the builder and repaired by the builder (who does not have a BBA certificate).

5. the original design and installation company have stated that the crib wall failures are due to bad workmanship.

6. crib wall built using different cross section of headers.

7. numerous areas where there is no overlaps of stretchers.

8. that the investigative work as specified by the NHBC was never completed.

the independent consultant used by the NHBC engaged the original design and installation company tp develop repairs despite the NHBC terms and conditions specifically stating that this cannot happen.



the proposed repairs are

1. to attach replacement bits of wood to the existing failed components using screws (despite NHBC specifying design calculations should be supplied for repairs, non have been produced).

2. to locally remove the fill and hammer the headers along the stretcher until they cover the incorrect joints (physical impossibility as the soil at the rear of the wall will prevent movement).



They will not address the incorrect barter of the wall (maximum is 1:4 according to the british standard we have 1:6.5, ie the wall is near vertical in places).

They will not address the design issues of loadings which exceed the maximum allowable.

they will not address soil migration.

they will not address the fact that the wall currently does not have a BBA certificate due to unauthorised repairs.

they say we should now address the issue with the builder despite the NHBC taking over the work and dealing with the builder under the NHBC disciplinary procedure as the builder would not agree to investigate or repair the wall.



We contacted the FOS and they have said this is not covered despite actually reviewing this issue between 2012 and 2014 when they put the issue on hold as the NHBC were addressing the issues.



can anyone advise what we can do without having to spend significant amounts of money taking the builder to court?

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It's very technical and beyond me to understand it, but from the general drift that I get, it seems to me that you will have to have one or more surveyors reports which support your position and then after that, I'm afraid it will be a question of taking the builder to court.


Do you know that the builder is available to be sued? Is the builder a limited liability company? And of course, what is the value of the claim? If it is more than £10,000 then you are looking at a fast track claim and of course that means that if you lose you may have to pay some of the costs of the action.

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As an afterthought, aren't there arbitration services for this kind of highly specialised dispute? You would still need to produce your own expert evidence – but it could be an alternative way to proceed.

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Considering all the faults with this crib wall, especially the incorrect lean back, shouldn't it be taken down and rebuilt?

These are structural retaining walls, you can't really afford to let it fail during heavy rain for example, that could cause a disaster.

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