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Ep 17 New Homes Quality Control Explained

18th March 2022

Good customer service and quality are among the most important aspects of buying a new build. Join us in our latest episode of The New Homes Podcast to find out how you can be sure your home buying experience meets the high standards we set for both.

Redrow group construction manager Zara Barrow and group customer and marketing director Matt Grayson are joined by John Cooper from New Home Quality Control and HouseScan’s Harry Yates to discuss the steps we take to get it right for everyone. 

Setting the standards

Our aim is to create a better place to live, but as well as being a 5-star developer, we also want to be a great retailer, and that means achieving quality at every stage of the build and keeping customers constantly up to date. That’s why we have a rigorous inspection process which uses new technology and goes through vital stages to ensure consistency too.

Zara said: “It goes through eight mandatory inspections so that every site team across the whole of our 13 operating divisions are working to the same standards, the same checklists, really trying to drive that quality and consistency across the country.”

People’s knowledge in what to expect can differ, explains Harry, which is why there are plans to standardise the approach. He said working with a professional snagging company is a good option to make sure you’ve got the knowledge and resources available to you, although John and his team offer video support via TikTok showing customers what they can look out for and it’s clearly a hit - his sixth video went viral with 3.7m views in 2.5 hours.

Who to choose?

Finding a reputable builder is key when buying a new build and, from our Redrow colleagues to our sub-contractors, we take pride in stepping back and looking at our homes and street scenes to ensure they meet our standard. 

Trustpilot is a good way of measuring customer satisfaction. Matt adds: “There are lots of different ways of looking at quality and to assess a new-homes developer, but looking online and reading customers’ stories is a big part of it.”

Social media sites and snagging companies are also useful in highlighting those who routinely offer satisfaction. 

Keeping customers informed

From foundations to finishes we like to keep customers involved at every stage of the building process to ensure satisfaction. Buyers are invited first to view their home during a hard hat tour when first-fix electrics and plumbing are installed, and the stud walls are up - it’s a chance to see their home for the first time and begin to build a relationship with the site team.

John suggests buyers should do their research before the hard hat tour: “Look online to find out what the first fix stage is, what you’re there to look at, and look at what could be wrong. Get a list of questions together.”

Reassurance

Matt talks about Redrow’s two-year warranty and our Homeowner Support Portal which offers information and self-help to customers, as well as a way to alert us if they have an issue we need to address. You can find out more this in our previous podcast.

“It’s about merging great face-to-face service with brilliant online services,” said Matt, “to make life easier for customers.”

And you can add to that the 10-year NHBC guarantee.

Coming soon

Processes to ensure homes meet customers’ expectations have never been better and, as well as telling us why, our experts say more is on the way to keep improving them still, including a New Homes Ombudsman (NHO) and New Homes Quality Board.

As well as quality, said Harry, it will be looking at ways to make the whole new build homebuying process even better, sharing independent information about developers, standardising pre-completion checklists, and helping if things do go awry.

It’s a positive step forward for the industry for a number of reasons, and Zara adds: “We are really in a good position to get on board with the NHO and hit the ground running with it. It’s only going to raise standards and consistency and be good for everyone involved.”

Available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and YouTube, make sure you subscribe to The New Homes Podcast to never miss an episode. Keep a look out for our next episode all about renovation nightmares and how the romance of a renovation can quickly turn sour…

 
Meet the guests
Zara Barrow - Group Construction Manager
Zara Barrow
Group Construction Manager
Matt Grayson - Group Customer & Marketing Director
Matt Grayson
Group Customer & Marketing Director
John Cooper - New Home Quality Control
John Cooper
New Home Quality Control
Harry Yates - HouseScan
Harry Yates
HouseScan

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