LABC Warranty, a major provider of structural warranties in the UK, reported better-than-expected figures for the first three quarters of 2020, despite difficult operating conditions resulting from the Covid19 pandemic.
LABC Warranty reported that the volume of units that were registered with it reduced by just 11% from January to September year-on-year. This compares well to wider industry figures, with Housebuilder Magazine reporting a 30% fall across the new-home build sector.
Notably, the first lockdown was bookended by bumper months for LABC Warranty, with a 69% year-on-year increase in unit registrations in February followed by a 35% increase in June.
It reported that this surge in activity continued throughout the summer and into autumn, prior to the November lockdown, with quotes rising to record high levels in October, showing a 47% increase on the same month last year.
For single-unit, self-build-only projects, the first three quarters of 2020 reflected a fall year-on-year of 9.2%, echoing the wider general trend. However, this was just 1.5% down on the same period for 2018, and LABC Warranty anticipates improving on 2018 by year-end 2020, but falling just short of 2019’s performance.
LABC Warranty, which operates in England and Wales, adopted remote inspections during the first lockdown while improving online services. It established close working relationships with builders and developers to adopt safe practices as sites returned to work.
Founded in 2007 to partner with Local Authority Building Control (LABC), LABC Warranty also strengthened its panel of A-rated in insurers in July by adding HSB to provide warranties for new homes including self-build projects.
Jacki Goodman, Managing Director of LABC Warranty, said despite ongoing uncertainty the company’s order book remained strong and while challenging, the year had been productive for the business.
She said: “Despite the pandemic and challenges in the latent defects insurance market, business has remained solid and we are heading towards the end of the year in a position of strength.
“With significant changes in building regulations in the pipeline and continued pressure to build the homes the country needs, LABC Warranty and our partners LABC are in a great place to help developers tackle these pressures and build future-ready homes that are safe, comfortable and desirable.”