A recent article by the BBC has revealed that some new homeowners have been asked to sign non-disclosure agreements (NDA’s) as a condition of any remedial repairs being done.
The article by Dan Whitworth, a Money Box reporter for the BBC, stated that they had spoken to several industry experts who said the gagging orders were being used regularly.
According to the article, Chris Blythe, former chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Building, said it was "quite common" for developers to use them.
"Unfortunately, because of the nature of the agreement, i.e.. non-disclosure, no-one knows very much about it," he said.
"But it's done for commercial reasons, because if it became known on a particular development that there are problems, other house buyers would be asking the house builder to do remedial work [for them too]”.
“So, they use these to silence people... and it's a despicable practice."
About 250,000 new houses were built in Britain, according to the latest annual figures, and defects in new-build houses are common. These are called ‘snags’ and are perfectly normal in new build houses, especially since a new build takes time to settle.
In response to this article, Barclay Firth are shocked to hear of this NDA practice and wish to assure all current and potential future homeowners that we would never ask anyone to sign an NDA.
Buying a Barclay Firth New Home comes with a 10-year Structural Home Warranty, which includes a two year ‘snagging’ period. This is something that ALL Developers of new homes are supposed to provide.
Michelle Gaffaney, from Barclay Firth today stated “We have built our reputation on our honesty and integrity and would never ask anyone to sign an NDA…. the design and quality of our homes speak for themselves….we are in direct contact with all home owners throughout the two-year snagging period and pride ourselves on resolving any issues promptly…”
Barclay Firth will be writing to the Housing MP to highlight this issue further in parliament.