Last edited 19 Jul 2018

National House Building Council NHBC

The National House Builders Registration Council (NHBRC) was established in 1936. It was originally created to tackle poor building practices during the inter-war years in the belief that improving professionalism and care amongst home builders would produce a better built product. It was a form of voluntary self-regulation, with the motto ‘Cavendo tutus’ - ‘be safe by taking care’.

The NHBRC was renamed the National House Building Council (NHBC) in 1973. The NHBC now independently regulates the new homes industry to advance the quality of UK house building. It is a non-profit distributing company limited by guarantee and is now the UK’s leading standard-setting body and provider of insurance and warranties for newly-built homes. It is also the largest single approved inspector for the building regulations.

NHBC roles and responsibilities include:

  • Registering house builders.
  • Setting and raising standards for construction.
  • Inspecting homes independently during construction and after completion.
  • Promoting best practice.
  • Providing cover for new and newly-converted homes.
  • Providing research, analysis, feedback and practical guidance.
  • Protecting consumers through the Buildmark warranty.

The NHBC business strategy sets out four main pillars:

  • Customer – researching the industry to provide homeowners with better access to information to help manage their homes. Understanding consumer needs to develop products that better meet these needs.
  • Financial – ensuring the capital position is be sufficient to support the organisations objectives.
  • Reputation – working closely with the government to help shape the future of the house building industry.
  • Standards – NHBC technical standards set technical requirements, performance standards and guidance for the design and construction of houses that are acceptable to the NHBC. They are supported by guidance notes, videos and other supplementary material for each section.

A board of directors runs the NHBC on a day-to-day basis. They are accountable to a council of members consisting of groups who have an interest in improving UK house building. Representatives can include architects, consumer groups, house builders, law societies, mortgage lenders, surveyors and so on.

The council commissions research and works with the government and key stakeholders in order to help shape housing policy.

In February 2017, The National House Building Council (NHBC) launched an online MMC hub to help inform house-builders about modern methods of construction. Standards manager Paul Cribbens said; “We hope that the new hub will act as the leading resource for manufacturers wanting to apply for a review, with details of the building systems currently accepted together with the very latest research.”

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