The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Premier Guarantee is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.
Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
20 | PREMIER GUARANTEE
Gary Devaney, chairman and
Greenland Group: Ram Quarter,
Housing is a hot topic. The UK is not building enough
housing, private or affordable, to come anywhere
close to meeting demand. What is also clear is that
there is a perceived lack of quality in newly built housing,
and the Grenfell enquiry has brought into question the
safety of existing buildings. What is not so clear is that there
are many companies, such as building control and ten-year
structural warranty or latent defects insurance provider Premier
Guarantee, investing to drive up the quality and standards of
housing. They are developing innovative ways to inspect and
insure the ever-changing construction landscape while also
possessing the capacity to cover the UK’s largest buildings. Their
CEO and chairman, Gary Devaney, elaborates.
This lack of housing has led to new funding models such as:
»The emergence of purpose-built private rental schemes backed by investment
»Housing associations merging or forming groups, such as G15, to maximise
investment to support new-build, mixed-tenure housing.
»Increasingly larger and taller buildings across the UK’s major cities, which pose a
greater insurance risk.
A lesser-known fact: to secure this investment, banks and financial institutions
require insurance backing for the construction of these properties, and to ensure
AT A GLANCE
»Chairman and CEO:
»Established in 1997
»Based in London, Birkenhead,
Stafford and Leeds with an
office in Limassol, Cyprus
»Services: Building control
and provision of structural
»No. of employees: 350
»Licensed and audited by
CICAIR to operate an
»Working with a panel of
»Founding partners of the
Consumer Code for Home
Builders and the New Homes
21PREMIER GUARANTEE |
BEST PRACTICE REPRESENTATIVE 2018
their investment is protected against
inherent latent defects in the design,
materials or workmanship, which could
result in costly failures.
For over 20 years, our team of qualified
surveyors have been providing design
review and site inspections for new
homes registered with Premier
Guarantee, to assist developers of all
types in achieving compliance with
our published technical standards and
Why are we different?
We, Premier Guarantee, have in-house
experts and teams who specialise in
managing everything from standard
housing to complex building risks and
multistorey cladding projects. We also
employ a hierarchy of specialists to
support our customers in achieving
their aims and objectives. We can
also provide an audit and approval
function for modern methods of
construction that comply with our
technical standards. This looks at the
lifespan for the components or systems
of the building for up to 60 years, and
is key when assessing value and risk for
Our ethos follows several points:
making home-building easier by
supporting customers to achieve
compliance, improving standards
through enhanced technical guidance
and focused training and development
of staff, with robust procedures to
support the necessary outcomes.
We also believe in thinking big, and
planning for where we want to be
when it comes to developing and
supporting the wider industry.
We’ve invested in technology and have
developed specialised software systems
that enable collaborative working for
our customers. These also permit third-
party access for the likes of insurers,
banks, brokers and financial investors
to ensure that the build process,
alongside progress and risks involved,
are transparent to all involved.
We have grown with the times, and
now have over 350 employees in
a number of offices across the UK.
This enables us to be one of the few
providers who can offer national
coverage while also delivering training
to customers and providing seminars on
key topics for like-mindedprofessionals.
Harbour Central, Isle
of Dogs, London
Greenland Group: Ram
We have in-
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
22 | PREMIER GUARANTEE
We were privileged to be asked to
give evidence as part of the APPG for
Excellence in the Built Environment,
which focuses on more homes
and fewer complaints. This raised
many interesting questions on the
continuing debate in relation to the
quality of new housing, its monitoring
and supporting consumer rights of
recourse. As a founding member
of the Consumer Code for Home
Builders, and the New Homes Review,
an independent customer survey, we
believe that there should be minimum
warranty standards and inspection
levels so that all homeowners
have equal rights, regardless of
the warranty provider, and we will
continue to push for this.
Our research shows that finding skilled
labour is the single biggest issue faced
by developers and builders of all sizes.
All areas of the industry must play
their part in this, as there is no quick
fix or single solution; this is further
hampered by unemployment, which
is presently at its lowest rate over the
past 40 years. We run graduate and
apprenticeship schemes to attract
new staff while developing existing
employees, and, as we continue to
invest in this area, so should others.
Additionally, regulations and red tape
are also a natural concern for SMEs.
Success comes from being
flexible in approach
Having a company structure which
enables you to be flexible, move with
the times and adapt to change has
made a significant difference to our
business. As it did for most companies
and industries, the economic downturn
had a major impact on our activity,
but we saw this as an opportunity to
adapt our model; we started bringing
alternative solutions to market and still
do so to this day.
When things do go wrong, we are
underwritten by world-class A-rated
insurers to ensure that issues are
addressed and claims are addressed
throughout the whole 10- to 12-year
period of cover.
In summary, with a backdrop of
government housing targets and
incentives such as Help to Buy, the
future looks bright for the construction
industry. We predict a sea change
in the use of modern methods of
construction to support increased
quality and speed of development,
and are well positioned to play a role
» CASE STUDY:
GREENLAND GROUP, RAM QUARTER,
We are delighted to have collaborated with Greenland Group to
provide warranty cover on the prestigious Ram Quarter development
in London. The Ram Quarter is an exciting new residential, retail and
leisure destination which combines contemporary living with iconic
heritage at the historic Young’s brewery site.
The Ram Quarter maintained its fascinating heritage during the
development phase by incorporating the brewery’s listed buildings.
Phase one, consisting of 338 apartments and 35 commercial units, is
the first of a three-phase scheme that will contain 713 apartments on
a site of just over eight acres.
Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review
This year’s Parliamentary Review reflects on a tumultuous and extraordinary year, globally and nationally. As well as being an MP, I am a keen student of history, and I am conscious that 2020 would mark the end of an era. It will be remembered as the year in which we concluded Brexit negotiations and finally left the European Union. Above all, it will be remembered as the year of Covid-19.
In our fight against the pandemic, I am delighted that our vaccination programme is beginning to turn the tide – and I pay tribute to the British businesses, scientists and all those who have helped us to achieve this. But the virus has dealt enormous damage, and we now have a duty to rebuild our economy.
We must ensure that businesses are protected. We have made more than £350 billion available to that end, with grants, business rates relief and our furlough scheme supporting more than 11 million people and jobs in every corner of the country, maintaining livelihoods while easing the pressure on employers. The next step is to work with business to build back better and greener, putting the net zero carbon challenge at the heart of our recovery. This is a complex undertaking, but one which I hope will be recognised as a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Through the prime minister’s ten point plan for a green industrial revolution, we can level up every region of the UK, supporting 250,000 green jobs while we accelerate our progress towards net zero carbon emissions.
With our commitment to raise R&D spending to 2.4% of GDP and the creation of the Advanced Research & Invention Agency, we are empowering our fantastic researchers to take on groundbreaking research, delivering funding with flexibility and speed. With this approach, innovators will be able to work with our traditional industrial heartlands to explore new technologies, and design and manufacture the products on which the future will be built – ready for export around the globe.
And I believe trade will flourish. We are a leading nation in the fight against climate change. As the host of COP26 this year, we have an incredible opportunity to market our low-carbon products and expertise. Our departure from the EU gives us the chance to be a champion of truly global free trade; we have already signed trade deals with more than 60 countries around the world.
As we turn the page and leave 2020 behind, I am excited about the new chapter which Britain is now writing for itself, and for the opportunities which lie ahead of us.