Housebuilders Respond To Five-Star Ratings

Posted 18 March 2021 by Keith Osborne

Some of the record number of housebuilders just awarded a 5-star customer satisfaction rating respond to their success...

The housebuilding industry has improved for buyers for the fourth year in a row with the announcement of the latest National New Homes Customer Satisfaction Survey (CSS) from HBF, NHBC and Homes for Scotland.

In the latest annual survey, just published, 91% of the 76,300 customers questioned said they would recommend their builder to a friend, HBF said this was the highest level recorded of this key metric since the survey began in 2006. It was 2% up on last year and a 7% improvement since 2016.

The survey for 2019/2020, covering the 12-month period from 1 October 2019 to 30 September 2020 also revealed that more than 92% of those who bought a new build home would buy new again. It also reported that 88% of respondents were satisfied with the quality of their new home and 82% were satisfied with their builder in terms of their home completing on time, despite pandemic-induced delays.

More than 70% of buyers said the number of “snags” they reported was less than or in line with what they expected. 81% reported being happy with the service provided by the builder after occupation, and 84% of buyers were satisfied with the service during the sales process, with 83% satisfied with the condition of the home when they moved in.

HBF’s executive chairman Stewart Baseley said: “The survey demonstrates that the industry is delivering an excellent level of service in the opinion of over 90% of its customers. The fact that we have seen four successive years of improved satisfaction levels shows the clear focus builders have been putting on the customer.

“That this level of satisfaction has been delivered during a pandemic that saw sites closed and builders unable to access homes for a period makes it even more of an achievement. The industry remains committed to maintaining the significant progress of recent years and fully supports moves to put an independent New Homes Ombudsman in place to strengthen customer protections and continue to drive up standards.”

Some 42 housebuilders have earned the highest, five-star rating from the CCS latest survey and some have responded to earning this.

Lovell managing director, Steve Coleby, said: “To achieve a 5-star rating from the HBF is incredible and is a true reflection of the talent and commitment of every single member of the Lovell team. Despite the enormous challenges we have faced in the last 12 months, it’s the drive and determination of the people in this business which has resulted in this prestigious accolade. We pride ourselves on the design and quality of the homes we build and a huge amount of work goes into ensuring that the excellent service we deliver meets our customers’ needs and expectations. To have this recognised is a real accomplishment. These have been testing times in many different ways for our teams and I am so pleased that our collective effort, to get hundreds of families happily moved into a Lovell home, has been achieved and recognised.”

Colin Wood, chief operating officer at Story Homes, said: “To achieve five-star builder status and such a high level of customer satisfaction, especially considering the extraordinary circumstances of the past year, is a fantastic achievement for our business. The scores we have been awarded reflect our ongoing commitment to providing the highest level of service to our customers, as well as our tenacity and determination to continue supplying high quality homes throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond.”

Martin Clancy, managing director of Dandara, commented: “To achieve a five-star rating in our first year of entering is testament to the customer experience, build product and quality, which has been part of Dandara’s DNA for three decades. It is great to have this recognised by our customers, who sit at the heart of everything we do. Despite the challenges of the pandemic over the last year, our customer care service never faltered. In 2021, we have kickstarted the year with a raft of new site acquisitions, and it is our ambition to build and sell five-star quality homes across more of the UK than ever before”.

Matthew Pratt, Redrow’s Group CEO, comments: “We are extremely proud to see our customers recognise our commitment to them and the innovative action we have taken to make their lives easier. I am thrilled that these collective efforts mean that in our customers’ eyes, we are a housebuilder that can be relied upon for quality, transparency, and dependability. Over the past three-years the dedication and teamwork of our people has shone through our survey reviews, and we are committed to continuing to listen to customers and improving our service offering even further.”

Mark Booth, managing director of Hayfield, said: “When we win awards, it is because a panel of judges has ranked us ahead of our peers, but this accolade is the ultimate seal of approval from our customers. It reflects what they think of Hayfield across the whole experience - before, during and after their purchase. To achieve the approval rating of 96.4% has taken hard work, skill and solid commitment from the entire team and I am immensely proud of the dedication shown. We take great pride in building hand-crafted homes with exceptional character. Retaining our five-star status is the result of our construction and customer care departments working tirelessly together to deliver the best possible home and service to our customers.”

John Tonkiss, CEO for McCarthy Stone, said: “We pride ourselves on offering the very best service and products to our customers at all times, so we are thrilled to have been awarded the full Five Stars from the HBF once again. Our customers have always been at the heart of our business, and this has never been more important than during the last year and through the challenges we have all faced. We will continue to ensure that the safety and wellbeing of our homeowners is our utmost priority – and to provide the support they need to live independently as part of a thriving retirement community.”

Kerry Hamer, head of customer services at Cavanna Homes, said: “We are thrilled to once again be recognised as a five-star homebuilder by the HBF. To achieve such a high degree of customer satisfaction, even during a challenging year, is fantastic and we are very grateful to our homebuyers and very proud of the result. Knowing that over 90% of homeowners would recommend us as a trusted builder is testament to our ongoing commitment to deliver the highest standards year-on-year.”

Mark Powell, group sales and marketing director at Bloor Homes, commented: “Despite the lockdowns and restrictions across the UK, we have strived to ensure our customers continue to see the same high levels of quality and service that they would always expect from us. We are incredibly proud to achieve a 5-star rating for a third year, particularly after the extraordinary 12 months we’ve all lived through. Our teams have changed the way they work with our customers, and the 5-star status is recognition of their adaptability and dedication to provide the same consistently high standard of service.”

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