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What is a pre-completion inspection (PCI)?

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The New Homes Quality Board (NHQB) is an independent, not-for-profit organization established to oversee reforms in the new home building industry in the UK. Their primary goal is to enhance the quality of new homes and protect consumers by ensuring that builders adhere to high standards of construction and customer service. 


According to the NHQB, a pre-completion inspection refers to the examination of a new residential property or building prior to its completion and handover to the homeowner. This inspection is typically performed by independent snagging inspectors or professionals who assess the property for any defects, issues, or unfinished work that may need to be rectified by the builder or developer. 


A pre-completion inspection, sometimes known as a pre-handover inspection, focuses on assessing the quality, workmanship, and compliance of the property with industry standards, building regulations, and any agreed-upon specifications. It aims to ensure that the property meets the expected standards of construction, finishes, and functionality before the homeowner takes possession. 


During the pre-completion inspection, the inspector will assess various aspects of the property, including finishes, fixtures, utilities, and external areas. They will examine areas such as walls, ceilings, flooring, doors, windows, brickwork, among others. The inspector will document any identified defects, issues, or incomplete work in a snagging report. 


The purpose of a pre-completion inspection is to identify any problems, defects, or areas that need improvement early on, allowing the builder or developer to rectify them before the property is handed over to the homeowner. This helps ensure a smoother handover process and reduces the likelihood of disputes or costly repairs post-completion. 


The NHQB encourages homeowners to consider independent pre-completion inspections to ensure that their new home meets the expected quality standards. By engaging an independent snagging inspector for the pre-completion inspection, homeowners can have more confidence in the construction quality, finishes, and overall suitability of their new property. 


Purpose of NHQB


Promote High Standards: Raise standards in the construction of new homes. 

Protect Consumers: Provide better consumer protection. 

Implement Reforms: Introduce and govern a new structure for the industry that holds builders accountable. 

New Homes Quality Code (NHQC)


The New Homes Quality Code (NHQC) is a set of guidelines and standards that builders must follow throughout the process of constructing and selling new homes. Its purpose is to ensure that new homes are built to a high standard and that buyers receive fair treatment and adequate support. 

Key Purposes 

Quality Assurance: Ensure new homes are constructed to a predefined standard. 

Transparency: Improve clarity around the home purchase process. 

Customer Support: Offer better support and recourse mechanisms for homebuyers. 

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Pre-completion Inspection

The Pre-completion Inspection is a process designed by the NHQB to allow homebuyers to thoroughly inspect their new home before finalising the purchase. This inspection is essential for identifying any issues or defects that need to be rectified by the builder.  



Identify Defects: Allow buyers to find and report any defects or incomplete works. 

Ensure Standards: Ensure the home meets the NHQC standards before completion. 

Provide Assurance: Give buyers peace of mind and assurance about the quality of their new home. 


In summary, the NHQB and the NHQC work together to elevate the standards of new home construction and protect consumers by providing clear guidelines and ensuring accountability in the homebuilding process. The Pre-completion Inspection is an important part of this framework, giving buyers an opportunity to ensure their home is built to the expected standards of finish. 

Helpful Downloads

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Consumer Code Homeowner Guidance

Consumer Code Developer Guidance

Consumer Code Best Practice Guidance

Pre-Completion Inspection Checklist

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