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New Homes Ombudsman Service (NHOS)

The New Homes Ombudsman Service (NHOS) is an independent body that assists customers in resolving issues with their newly purchased homes, particularly when the registered developer fails to address these issues. It covers the period from the reservation and legal completion of a property through to after-sales and complaints management for issues arising during the first two years of the new home purchase.

NHOS is comprised of two main teams: the casework team, which determines the eligibility of complaints and facilitates early resolution, and the Ombudsman team, which makes decisions on cases when early resolution is not possible. These teams are overseen by the New Homes Ombudsman, a Lead Ombudsman, and a casework manager.

The NHOS operates as a subsidiary of the Dispute Service Ltd, a non-profit dispute resolution company. Its operations are monitored by the NHO Service Board, which consists mainly of directors independent of the housebuilding industry. The Service Board does not interfere with the decisions made by the Ombudsman, but reviews the operation and management of the service.

The NHOS is free for customers and its costs are covered by the New Homes Quality Board (NHQB) through a levy on registered developers. The NHQB, an independent, non-profit entity, aims to ensure high standards in the quality of new homes and customer service provided by developers. It has commissioned the NHOS to handle customer complaints independently.