Flooding Garden

New Build Inspections

battison10

New Member
Help!! Have been in a Barratts home for 8 months now and had some snagging problems virtually every week. Main problem was that the back garden kept flooding with slightest bit of rain, contracts manager told us that it 'is only rain water'!! This rain water smells stagnant and i have a 2 year old daughter who will probably not be able to play in the back garden due to the stagnant water. Ground was very uneven with slopes in all directions. they have semi sorted this out and put land drains all round the garden but the grass is still saturated. because of the lie of the land the garden does not get any sunlight in Winter and minimal in Summer and i cannot see how the ground will dry out (grass in parts is now dying due to so much water) How can i get this sorted? please help!!
 

Tony

Administrator
I would be tempted to get the stagnant water checked out by the Environmental Health people from the local council. If it smells, it could be coming from the drains.

The land drains should help, but the soil may still be of a poor quality. Ideally you want 100mm topsoil, not compacted sub-soil and builders' rubble. No grass will surive on this for long and it won't drain well either.

I would get a landscape gardener in to get a professional opinion.

Hope this helps

Tony
 

battison10

New Member
Just to let you know that I had some people come round from Barratts to look at other snagging problems which we had. I bought up the topic of the garden with them again and they have sort of admitted that yes there is a problem with the garden which they will sort out in March when the weather gets a bit better. Will keep you updated on the progress.
 

tonyw

New Member
If they have not done anything to date, ask them just to put there proposal in writing to you, they will if you ask them, all you require is what they are proposing to do, no big deal eh ? :unsure:
 

battison10

New Member
Well we are on the 24th March which leaves Barratts one week only to come and do what they promised, sort out the garden. As up to yet we have had no contact whatsoever even though i have filled in yet another service request form. But who knows what can happen in a week!! I have taken on board what you said about getting their proposal in writing and i will hopefully request this over the weekend via the sales centre or by fax. Will keep you updated.
 

battison10

New Member
Still waiting for contracts manager to contact me with a date and proposal of when and what they are going to do. come across another problem now, our concrete garage floor(which is level with the back garden)is now soaking wet!! could this have anything to do with our swamp?
 

battison10

New Member
Well the contracts manager and site manager finally inspected the garden again. Their proposal was to re-turf a section of the garden but not to take up the old grass!! their plan was to lay more top soil on top of the dying grass and then put more turf on. although they did put some drains in last year this still does not drain all the water away from the uneven garden. I tried to explain that there was no way they put down 100mm of top soil when the garden was first done because of the amount of rubble and bricks close to the surface, they argued that they always put down a minimum of 150mm, i don't think so. Can someone please point me in the right direction as to who i can ask to get this problem sorted out. i know that most peoples gardens are wet this time of year but ours is at the stage where you can see the water rising up your shoes when you walk on it. All i want is a garden where my 2 year old Daughter can play without getting muddy, wet and being bitten by midges which seem to love our damp conditions in the garden. Anyones help would be greatly appreciated.:(
 

Hopeful

New Member
Well Tonyw

Here you are again dishing out advice. Yet did I not read somewhere that you have bought many newbuilds and did not have all this bother? So how come you know so much about what everyone else should be doing?

I can tell you from experience that the developer will not give you a method statement. For the last 3 years in every case we have had to produce method statements, drawings and even quotations for much of the work we have had to have done. And unless a building surveyor is breathing all over them as they execute the work, they will still get it wrong or damage something else. In what other industry is such blatant disregard for customers and quality control tolerated? Oh but of course this is a handcrafted work of art and mistakes sometimes happen. What?????
 

Hopeful

New Member
'I would be tempted to get the stagnant water checked out by the Environmental Health people from the local council. If it smells, it could be coming from the drains.

The land drains should help, but the soil may still be of a poor quality. Ideally you want 100mm topsoil, not compacted sub-soil and builders' rubble. No grass will surive on this for long and it won't drain well either.

I would get a landscape gardener in to get a professional opinion.'

Battison 10 you need to take the advice given by Tony (NOT Tonyw) that I have repeated above. You must write to your developer and say that you find their approach unsatisfactory and intend to take further advice. Then contact your local council office and ask for the Environmental Health Officer. Get them down to check out the water if you suspect it is stagnant. We did this and the EHO arrrived the same day. Make sure he understands your concerns for your 2year old daughter. Contact a local landscape gardener. He will give you an opinion and a price for the work and then send the opinion and the quote to your developer and ask them when they will do the work to this specification. Take photographs and send them to your developer. Be persistent and above all remain calm but firm. Good luck. You can do this!!
 

Karla

New Member
Sorry to interupt! But i also have a sloping garden (away from house) and am also worried that this will happen to my garden as well. What should the developers/or me be doing to prevent this?
 

tonyw

New Member
The Developer is only responsible for any water laying within a 2 metre distance from the property, and the water does have to be 'laying' there for some time, if it is draining away at an acceptable rate, this is deemed good enough, the best thing to do is ring up the NHBC and INSIST on a resolution service to take place, if your property is under 2 years old, they will very likely instruct the developer to do something about it, (ie: fit some land drainage or the like) its a free service, as long as your house is registered with the NHBC.
 

tonyw

New Member
Hopeful, you say you have provided method statements for the work the developer is going to do ??? bit strange if that is the case, i also find your attitude extremely funny, just because i have not experianced everything that can go wrong with a house, does not exempt me from giving out friendly advice, people reading this do not have to take any advice from anyone who posts on here, and in all honesty HOPEFUL, i can see why you get nowhere with your developer,(and probably most other things in all other walks of life) i would suspect its YOUR attitude thats gets the worst out of everybody, Chill out.....you only have one stab at this thing called life, try enjoying some of it, instead of making your life (and very likely everyones around you) a misery !!!

I bet if you had lived in a previous life, when mud huts were all the rage, you would have complained about the mud !!!!! :p :p
 
C

Colin Jack

Guest
NHBC Guideline 9.2 D-5 states 'Garden areas within 3m of the habitable part of the home shall not be waterlogged'

The building regulations also talk about surface water.

You must get drawings, specifications and method statements from the builder for any type of remedial work, unless it is really minor or cosmetic. However if you do actually manage to get it, give yourself a medal. This is obvious but they don't supply drawings, specifications and method statements simply because it then makes them liable for the works and something you can use to pursue them with in court. Any builder who tells you you don't need this information is setting you up, and may indeed expose you to prosecution (certainly in Scotland).

In Scotland the Scottish Executive issued a special notice stating that homeowners must not rely on the Completion Certificate as any guarantee of workmanship. You must employ your own professional to ensure this. How on earth will your professional know what is to be done if he/she does not have and drawings, specifications and method statements.

My garden is waterlogged in all but the best weather. Bett Homes initially told me to plant more grass, then proposed to install a soakaway. On a site which sits on millions of tonnes of clay, I have no idea where they expected the water to soakaway to. They also wanted to place it too close to the house which contravenes current guidance. Then they proposed a piped system which would go straight into the public sewer without any form of silt-trap. Again this contravenes current guidance. I have asked Bett Homes for drawings, specifications and method statements but they refuse to provide them - I wonder why????

The NHBC do not tell the builder how to do any type of works. It is up to you to get all the information you need from the builder. This is another situation when the NHBC are even more useless than usual.
 
P

Phil

Guest
I am not surprised you are having problems You bought a Barratt Home!

Dont you watch the TV - Barratt are always on. They have a VERY bad name inside the industry and are nearly always featured in programmes about problems with new homes.
 

tonyw

New Member
What a ridiculous statement to make, there are MANY MANY happy and satisfied Barratt customers, and all big companys in any industry are bound to have problems.
 

Greg

New Member
Wow! Just came accross this site for the first time and guess what...? I'm having the same problem!
We moved into our new house in Manchester 12 months ago, they turfed the back garden for about £450. Anyway, it never took properly, and earlier this year they agreed to re-turf the problem areas. We've had a great lawn all 'summer' until this week, when it's started to bucket down, and now the lawn is going back to the way it was! There's a slight slope, leading to the worst of the water logging, and the grass is starting to die. There doesn't seem to be any drainage! The house was built on the site of an old hospital, and I suspect the rubble has been compacted with about 6' of top soil thrown over it. Are there any laws / standards regarding the way gardens should be left on new build?

Er... just read the thread about NHBC regs regarding 2- 3 metres - which one is it before I start nagging my developer?



Greg
 

Tony

Administrator
It is 3m, Colin's quote is correct:

NHBC Guideline 9.2 D-5 states 'Garden areas within 3m of the habitable part of the home shall not be waterlogged

Also
9.2 - S8 Planting shall be completed in a
manner appropriate for the site
conditions and layout
If landscaping is specified, the work should be carried
out and completed in a competent professional
manner.

i.e turf should not die after one summer

Hope this helps.

Tony
 

battison10

New Member
well after weeks/months of battling with Barratts, their resolution to this matter was far from satisfactory!! All they wanted to do was re-turf the garden (on top of the old turf!) I finally managed to get them to dig all the top turf off and then rotovate (excuse spelling) the garden and put more top soil and fresh turf down. You would not believe the amount of rubbish what came out of the garden!! At one point the contracts manager came round and said to the landscapers 'for God's sake don't let them see that' little did he realise that my Mother In Law had already seen it and heard what he said!! Lawn been down about 2 months now and is really green but in the problem areas i can see that the lawn is starting to deteriorate already, I doubt it will last til next summer so the only choice we will have is to put decking/slabs down instead (at our cost). I know to at least another 5-6 households who are not happy with their gardens and who have all complained. I am just waiting to see what happens with their problems. I think that if the problem still perstists after this winter then I will get the NHBC involved to see if they can get this sorted.
 

battison10

New Member
Just to let everyone know that inevitable has happened. The freshly laid turf has now turned into a swamp. I am sending pictures to both Barratts and NHBC to see if anything can be done (not holding breath). If it was a large garden with a small area affected I could probably live with it but our garden is no bigger than a postage stamp!!
 
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