Warranties and cover

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Buildmark Choice - frequently asked questions

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As a builder, why should I choose Buildmark Choice?

Buildmark Choice is the UK's leading warranty product for affordable housing.  Our in-house experts support our registered builders with unrivalled technical knowledge and support.  We work in partnership with many registered providers and are recognised and trusted in this sector.

Why do registered providers value Buildmark Choice?

When the development is covered by Buildmark Choice, the registered provider is reassured that the build has been carried out to rigorous standards and also has protection if problems arise in the future.

Mortgage lenders will only lend on properties that have appropriate cover.  Unlike other warranties, Buildmark Choice is recognised, trusted and approved by all lenders.

What is and what is not covered by Buildmark Choice?

Choose Buildmark Choice and your registered providers and their tenants will be protected with:

  • Cover for the first 2 years after completion if you don't meet your obligations to repair damage
  • Cover for damage to certain parts of the home in years 3 to 10
  • 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 Ltd is appointed for building control

Optional extras to enhance this cover include:

  • pre-completion contractor insolvency
  • professional fees
  • a further 2 years damage cover , giving a total 12 years' protection

Buildmark Choice does not provide cover for general wear and tear, condensation, normal shrinkage, cosmetic damage or damage arising from failure to maintain the property.

What types of project are covered by Buildmark Choice?

Buildmark Choice is designed for newly-built or converted affordable housing.  The policy is suitable for rental and shared ownership schemes and may be available for general and special needs housing, multiple occupancy projects, foyer schemes, student and NHS Trust accommodation and mixed use sites.

How is the cost of Buildmark Choice calculated?

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 excess will also affect the cost.

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

Who can apply for Buildmark Choice?
Buildmark Choice is available to all builders and developers registered with NHBC who wish to build or convert housing for the affordable housing sector.
When does Buildmark Choice cover start and when does it end?

Buildmark Choice can give protection to the registered provider 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 - usually the date of legal completion.  10 years cover is standard but there is the option to extend the cover to 12 years in total.

What is my liability under Buildmark Choice?

You are responsible to rectify certain damage caused by your failure to build to the NHBC Standards which is first reported to you 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.

Can cover be transferred to subsequent owners on sale?

When the home is sold, the remaining term of cover will automatically transfer to the new owner.

If the registered provider enters into a new shared equity arrangement with a private individual, the private individual will also have the benefit of the remaining term of cover under the Buildmark Choice policy.  It may be necessary for the policy excess to be adjusted if this happens.

How do I find out more and apply for Buildmark Choice?

To discuss your requirements for an existing or future project please call us on 0344 633 1000 and ask for 'Customer Services'.

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

To apply for a firm quotation and apply for cover, please complete a SNIN (Site Notification and Initial Notice) form and Register the site with us.

What are the NHBC Standards?
To offer Buildmark Choice cover, you are required to build in accordance with the NHBC Standards which provide a benchmark for acceptable levels of design, material specification and workmanship for newly-built homes registered with NHBC.
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