We were recently successful in a case against a national house builder who refused to accept liability for the defective kitchen installed in one of their new build properties.
Shortly after getting the keys to their brand new home our clients discovered a number of defects in their kitchen. They complained to the builder and remedial works were attempted several times. The results were unsatisfactory and the builder refused to take any more action. They came to us looking for a way to force the builder to take responsibility for the state of their kitchen.
When you purchase a house, the contract you enter into with the house builder is encapsulated in the missives. If you are looking to enforce a term of those missives it is important to check when they might expire. With new build homes, most missives expire after a period of 2 years from the date of entry which means that you may no longer have the right to pursue the builder for any breach after that period.
Some new build missives refer to the property being completed according to NHBC or Premier Guarantee technical standards and the test is then whether the state of the kitchen meets those standards. This wasn’t the case here as the missives simply stated that the property was to be completed in accordance with plans and specifications agreed with the purchasers. Those plans and specifications included the supply and installation of a kitchen. We argued that there was an implied term in the contract that the individual items in the kitchen supplied would be of satisfactory quality and that the installation of the kitchen would be done with reasonable skill and care.
The Sheriff accepted that argument and after hearing evidence concluded that the kitchen was defective and that damage had been done which was not capable of correction to a satisfactory standard. The Sheriff awarded our clients damages including the cost to repair and replace damaged and unsatisfactory items in the kitchen and a sum to represent the distress and inconvenience suffered by our clients. They can now take steps to bring their kitchen up to the standard they expected when they first purchased the property.
If you have recently purchased a property and have encountered difficulties then please contact us online by clicking here or speak to a member of our specialist team on 0333 222 1855.