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Frequently asked questions

Check out our list of FAQs and answers

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General

Which NHBC warranty and insurance product do I need?

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We have 3 main products to choose from:

  • Buildmark covers newly built or newly converted homes developed for private sale. It’s also the product to use where you are commissioned to build a house for someone on land they own (custom-build or build-to-contract).
  • Buildmark Choice is for newly built or newly converted homes that are developed for rent in either the private or affordable housing sectors.
  • Buildmark Connect is for the commercial premises in mixed use schemes so that you can obtain warranty and insurance cover for both the homes and the commercial premises you’re developing from the same provider.

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General

What is premium rating?

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Our premium rating scheme works on the same principle as a 'no claims' bonus for car insurance. We look at how long a builder has been on our register and the number of claims that have been made against them in that time.

NHBC registered builders who have kept up high standards of build quality over many years will have a better premium rating and will benefit from lower prices when taking out warranty and insurance cover. Because we value good building practices, the typical fee for a good, long-serving builder will be significantly less than that for a long-serving builder with a bad claims record.

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Homes For Sale

What is and what is not covered by Buildmark?

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Choose Buildmark and your homebuyers will benefit from:

  • pre-completion deposit protection
  • the two year builder warranty period backed by the NHBC resolution service and guarantee
  • the eight year NHBC insurance policy for physical damage to certain parts of the home caused by a failure to build to the NHBC Technical Requirements
  • protection for certain breaches of Building Regulations if NHBC Building Control Services Limited is appointed for and carries out building control for the property
  • pre-existing contamination on the land on which their home is built.

There are some things that are not NHBC’s responsibility, such as, but not limited to:

  • wear and tear, neglect and failure to undertake appropriate maintenance
  • storms and other severe weather conditions
  • fire and smoke
  • damp, condensation and shrinkage which is not a result of the registered builder failing to meet the NHBC Technical Requirements
  • theft or accidental damage (the homeowner should consider separate insurance for this).

There are also certain restrictions on the cover:

  • we will not pay for claims below the minimum claim value (this only applies to section 3 of the policy)
  • there are financial limits to how much we will pay (please see the full policy booklet for details)
  • cover is not in place until the policy has been accepted
  • conditions and exclusions apply.

Please see the latest Buildmark policy document for all the current terms and conditions and financial limits that apply.

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Homes For Sale

When does Buildmark cover start and when does it end?

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Buildmark gives protection to the buyer from exchange of contracts / missives if you are not able to complete the home due to insolvency or fraud.

Buildmark cover ends on the date shown on the Buildmark insurance certificate - usually 10 years after the date of legal completion.

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Homes For Rent

What is and what is not covered by Buildmark Choice?

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Buildmark Choice provides cover for landlords of newly built or newly converted homes which are rented out. It includes:

  • a two year contractor repair warranty backed by the NHBC resolution service and guarantee
  • then eight years NHBC insurance cover for physical damage to certain parts of the home caused by a failure to build to the NHBC Technical Requirements
  • cover for pre-existing contamination of the land on which the home is built
  • protection for certain breaches of Building Regulations if NHBC Building Control Services Limited is appointed and carries out building control.

Optional extras to enhance this cover include:

  • pre-completion contractor insolvency
  • professional fees incurred in connection with a valid claim
  • a further 2 years insurance cover, giving a total 12 years' cover.

There are some things that are not NHBC’s responsibility, such as, but not limited to:

  • wear and tear, neglect and failure to undertake appropriate maintenance
  • storms and other severe weather conditions
  • fire and smoke
  • damp, condensation and shrinkage which is not a result of the registered builder failing to meet the NHBC Technical Requirements
  • reduction in the value of the home or land

There are also certain restrictions on the cover:

  • we will not pay for claims below the excess (this only applies to Part C of the policy)
  • there are financial limits to how much we will pay (please see the full policy booklet for details)
  • conditions and exclusions apply.

Please see the latest Buildmark Choice policy document for all the current terms and conditions and financial limits that apply.

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Homes For Rent

When does Buildmark Choice cover start and when does it end?

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Buildmark Choice can give protection from before the home is built if, due to your insolvency or fraud, you are unable to start or finish construction. To obtain this cover, your client will need to select the optional pre-completion cover.

Buildmark Choice cover then continues for 10 or 12 years after the date on the Buildmark Choice insurance certificate. This is the date NHBC issue a cover note following a successful pre-handover inspection.

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Commercial Premises

What is and what is not covered by Buildmark Connect?

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Buildmark Connect will cover the owner of non-residential premises for 10 years. It provides:

  • Cover for the first 2 years after completion if you don't meet your obligations to repair defects or damage
  • Cover for damage to certain parts of the premises in years 3 to 10
  • Cover for pre-existing contamination of the land on which the premises are built

There are some things that are not NHBC’s responsibility, such as, but not limited to:

  • wear and tear, neglect and failure to undertake appropriate maintenance
  • storms and other severe weather conditions
  • damp, condensation and shrinkage which is not a result of the registered builder failing to meet the NHBC Technical Requirements
  • Costs of, or associated with, fitting out (including the installation of shop fronts)

There are also certain restrictions on the cover:

  • we will not pay for claims below the excess (this only applies to Section B of the policy)
  • there are financial limits to how much we will pay (please see the full policy booklet for details)
  • conditions and exclusions apply.

Full details of what is covered, the conditions and financial limits are in the latest Buildmark Connect policy document

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Commercial Premises

When does Buildmark Connect cover start and when does it end?

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Cover starts on the date of the Buildmark Connect insurance certificate - usually the date that we agree that the premises substantially comply with NHBC requirements.

Buildmark Connect cover then ends 10 years after the date on the Buildmark Connect insurance certificate.

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General

Who can apply for NHBC warranty and insurance products?

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Our warranty and insurance products are available to all builders and developers registered with NHBC. See Become NHBC registered.

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General

What are the NHBC Standards and the NHBC Technical Requirements?

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To offer NHBC warranty and insurance cover, you are required to build in accordance with the NHBC Technical Requirements, which are contained in the NHBC Standards and provide a benchmark for acceptable levels of design, material specification and workmanship for newly-built homes registered with NHBC.

You can see more about the NHBC Standards here

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Homes For Sale

What types of project are covered by Buildmark?

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Buildmark is designed for new homes you are building or newly converted for private sale. There is a separate version of Buildmark for apartments. It’s also the product to use where you are commissioned to build a house for someone on land they own (we call this custom-build).

  • If you are building homes for rent in either the private or affordable housing sectors you should consider Buildmark Choice.
  • If your project includes a commercial element, you should apply for Buildmark Connect for the commercial premises within your scheme.
  • If you are building a home to live in yourself, then you will need a specialist self-build warranty.

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Homes For Sale

What is my liability under Buildmark?

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As the builder or developer, you are responsible to rectify damage caused by your failure to build to the NHBC Technical Requirements (contained within the NHBC Standards) which is first reported within your liability period (usually the first 2 years following the date of legal completion). You must do this within a reasonable time and at your own expense.

For full details of the builder warranty responsibilities in the first two years of Buildmark cover, please see the latest Buildmark policy document.

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Homes for Rent

What types of project are covered by Buildmark Choice?

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Buildmark Choice is specially designed to protect landlords of newly built or converted homes which are developed to be rented out in the private, affordable or social housing sectors.

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Homes for Rent

What is my liability under Buildmark Choice?

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As the contractor, you are responsible to rectify certain damage caused by your failure to build to the NHBC Technical Requirements (contained within the NHBC Standards) which is first reported within your liability period (usually for the first 2 years following completion). You must do this within a reasonable time and at your own expense.

For full details of the contractor warranty responsibilities in the first two years of Buildmark Choice cover, please see the latest Buildmark Choice policy document.

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Commercial premises

Can Buildmark Connect cover be transferred to subsequent owners on sale?

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As and when premises are sold or assigned, the remaining term of cover will automatically transfer to the new owner (although note that the limits of the policy may already have been partly or fully used up by claims from the first or subsequent owners).

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Commercial premises

What types of project are covered by Buildmark Connect?

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Buildmark Connect is our specialist warranty and insurance cover for newly built or newly converted commercial premises in mixed-use developments. For example, a development comprising residential flats plus retail outlets, surgeries or workshops.

You can combine Buildmark Connect with our market-leading Buildmark cover if your scheme also includes homes for sale or with Buildmark Choice if you’re building homes for rent thus keeping your commercial and residential warranties with one provider.

Buyers who require funding for newly-built, non-residential, premises will need cover such as Buildmark Connect in order to secure finance.

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General

How do I find out more and apply for NHBC warranty products?

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Registered builders can request a Buildmark or Buildmark Choice guide price with no obligation.

For a detailed quotation or to buy Buildmark or Buildmark Choice please complete a Site Notification and Initial Notice (SNIN) form.

To discuss your requirements in more detail please call us on 0344 633 1000 and ask for 'Customer Services' or send us an email to cssupport@nhbc.co.uk.

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Self-build/ Custom-build

I am building a house to live in myself, what cover do I need?

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If you’re building a home to live in yourself (we call this self-build) then we don’t currently offer our own warranty and insurance product. However, we have an agreement with Self-Build Zone, the market-leading supplier in the self-build sector, who you can approach to discuss your self-build warranty, site insurance and other requirements.

For more information, or to request or a quote, please visit www.nhbcselfbuildzone.com or call 0333 123 2322, available Monday - Friday 9am to 5pm.

NHBC Services Limited is an Introducer Appointed Representative of SENNOCKE INTERNATIONAL INSURANCE SERVICES LIMITED. SENNOCKE INTERNATIONAL INSURANCE SERVICES LIMITED are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for its insurance mediation activities. SENNOCKE INTERNATIONAL INSURANCE SERVICES LIMITED incorporated and registered in England and Wales with company number 02489110 Trading as Self-Build Zone, and BUILD-ZONE SURVEY SERVICES LIMITED incorporated and registered in England and Wales with company number 07644180 and whose registered office is at 6 Pembroke Road, Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 1XR.

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Self-build/ Custom-build

I am an NHBC registered builder and I have been contracted to build a house for someone on land they own, which warranty and insurance product do I need?

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In these circumstances, Buildmark is the correct NHBC warranty and insurance product to choose. You can find out more here.

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Homes For Sale

How is the cost of Buildmark calculated?

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Once you are registered with NHBC (see Become NHBC registered), you will need to register each plot you are building for Buildmark cover.

The cost of cover is dependent on your premium rating and the selling price of the new homes you are developing.

Registered builders can request a no obligation Buildmark guide price. For a detailed and specific quotation, you’ll need to complete our Site Notification and Initial Notice form (SNIN).

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Homes For Sale

Can Buildmark cover be transferred to subsequent homeowners on sale?

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Buildmark provides cover for the home and is fully transferable during the life of the policy. So, if the owner sells the home and the Buildmark policy has not expired, the new owner benefits from the remaining cover (although note that the limits of the policy may already have been partly or fully used up by claims from the first or subsequent owners).

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Homes For Rent

How is the cost of Buildmark Choice calculated?

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Once you are registered with NHBC (see Become NHBC registered), you will need to register each new development for Buildmark Choice.

The cost is dependent on your Premium Rating, the net build cost and the contract value of each development. The chosen level of optional cover and policy excess will also affect the cost.

Registered builders can request a free Buildmark Choice cover guide price at any time.

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Homes For Rent

Can Buildmark Choice cover be transferred to subsequent owners on sale?

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Buildmark Choice provides cover to landlords of developments of homes provided for rental or shared ownership. If the development as a whole is sold the remaining term of Buildmark Choice cover can be transferred to the new owner (although note that the limits of the policy may already have been partly or fully used up by claims from the first or subsequent owners). Similarly, if an individual home within a scheme is sold the subsequent owner can also benefit from cover provided by NHBC, although in both cases it would be necessary to contact us to discuss further.

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Commercial premises

How is the cost of Buildmark Connect calculated?

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Once you are registered with NHBC (see Become NHBC registered), you will need to register each plot for Buildmark Connect cover. The cost is dependent on your Premium Rating and the build cost of the premises.

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