Abandon All Fear

What nobody else seems to be saying…

Quote Unquote: The BBC’s Upbeat Housing Market

Posted by Lex Fear on August 22, 2007

BBC News, 21st August 2007:

Persimmon, Britain’s largest housebuilder, has unveiled a jump in profits and says it expects the housing market to remain robust.

Pre-tax profits for the six months to 30 June rose 9.8% to £281.1m as it racked up sales worth £1.51bn.”

BBC News, 19th June 2006:

“Residents at one of Glasgow’s most upmarket developments have claimed that the former Sheriff Court conversion has been plagued by problems.

Homeowners have formed a residents’ association to resolve complaints about the building, which was converted by Persimmon Homes a year ago.

They claim to have suffered flooding several times and say they were left without heating or hot water in winter.”

BBC Watchdog Report: Permission Homes, 3rd February 2004:

“The nation?s biggest home builder also has the biggest house-building complaints file on the Watchdog database.

Persimmon build new homes and renovate old buildings. Watchdog has received over 450 complaints ranging from problems rectifying extensive snagging lists and poor customer service to subsidence and floods…”

I worked for house building company once. Without divulging the name (at this point in time), I can tell you there is a little known tactic in the industry. In order to build and sell the homes as soon as possible, certain corners are cut leaving them to catch up by offering a 2 year warranty/aftercare service. They then hire a handyman company to sit on the site and attend to all the faults the homeowners are destined to find. Listed as ‘defects’, these included flooding in the garden, loose fixtures and fittings (shower and kitchen), faulty sink taps and electrics, poor plastering and loose guttering amongst the most regular reported faults. Customers complaining even one day outside of warranty were denied any assistance.

This is standard practice in the industry, exceptions are rare. The golden rule is, don’t buy a new property, older properties have had most of their problems fixed and have stood the test of time.

And, of course, don’t trust a building company that announces pre-tax profits in the midst of a market downturn.

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