Solicitors & Estate Agents

The Consumer Code for New Homes sets higher levels of consumer protection above and beyond the law. The Code covers the New Home buying process to ensure that the selling activities the Developer engages in are of a consistently high standard.

This includes:

  • Pre-Contract Stage:  Ensuring high standards of customer service, fair and clear documentation, and adequate information provision, to ensure consumers are able to make an informed decision about buying a New Home before they enter into Contract with a Developer.
  • Contract Exchange Stage:  Governing the Contract of Sale, requiring minimum standards for fair and transparent contracts, accurate information about when the property will be ready, termination rights, changes to New Homes after Contract, and protecting deposits & pre-payments.
  • Legal Completion:  Providing minimum standards for what must be done, the stage the New Home must have reached and what information must have been provided before Legal Completion can take place, ensuring consumers’ health & safety and providing the opportunity for a Pre-Completion Inspection.
  • After Occupation Starts:  Setting minimum standards for the After-Sales Service which Buyers should expect to receive, and ensuring they have suitable information for maintaining and living in the New Home.
  • Complaints & Disputes:  Setting minimum requirements for Complaints Procedures and giving consumers access to a clear, speedy and free Independent Dispute Resolution Scheme if things don’t go according to plan.

Nothing in the Code affects a Buyer’s existing legal rights or replaces Developers’ legal obligations or existing legislation regarding the New Home.

Who is covered by the Code?

Buyers are covered by the Consumer Code for New Homes if they have bought or are buying a new build home from one of our Registered Members, for all New Homes which the Developer has registered with one of our Structural Warranty Bodies. The provisions of the Code apply to New Homes for a period of two years after the date of Legal Completion.

The Version of the Code which will apply will depend on when the New Home was reserved:

You can check if a Developer is registered with the Consumer Code for New Homes by looking at the list of Code Members here.

When does the Code not apply?

The Consumer Code for New Homes does not apply to:

  • new homes that are covered by any other Consumer Code in the new homes sector.
  • new homes bought under a shared-ownership scheme.
  • second-hand properties (see Code for details).
  • any new-build properties which were not sold by a Developer registered with the Code.
  • new-build homes which have not been registered with a Structural Warranty Body.
  • properties which remain under the ownership of the Developer.
  • properties acquired by social landlords for rent.
  • properties acquired by a receiver and sold onto consumers.
  • properties acquired by corporate bodies, partnerships, charitable organisations, commercial landlords or other non-consumer purchasers (see Code for detail).
  • properties built by self-builders or under contract between a builder and an individual for their own occupation.
  • properties assigned or sub-sold by an investor to a third party prior to ownership of the properties transferring from the Developer to the Buyer on receipt of the purchase monies paid by the Buyer to the Developer.
  • properties built under architects’ certificates, unless a Structural Warranty Body has also issued a Structural Warranty.

Update to the Code!

The Code has recently launched Version 5 which is effective for all reservations from 1 January 2024. Make sure you understand what changes have been made and what you will need to do to comply with the new version of the Code.

Find out more

Downloads for Estate Agents & Solicitors

Version 5 – Applies to all reservations from 1st January 2024

The Code – Version 5             Developer Guidance – Version 5               Guide for Buyers of New Homes – Version 5             Summary of Changes to the Code – Version 5



Version 4 – Applies to all reservations up to and including 31st December 2023

The Code – Version 4              Developer Requirements – Version 4
Guide for Buyers of New Homes – Version 4