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Mortgages and Japanese Knotweed
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# 1
Dave6335
Old 11-09-2012, 11:33 PM
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Default Mortgages and Japanese Knotweed

My inlaws (recently passed away) house is on the market. An interested party went along to view the property and then informed us that there was knotweed in a corner of the garden, some 20 metres or so from the building itself. They said they would like to put in an offer but as there was this knotweed they stated they could only get a mortgage at a much higher interest rate than normal. I'm aware that some mortgage providers will not grant a mortgage unless the knotweed is being treated but I have never heard that higher interest rates on the loan would apply because of the dreaded weed.
Has anyone else heard of this?
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# 2
DVardysShadow
Old 11-09-2012, 11:47 PM
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Is there actually knotweed? Lots of people would just run a mile - are they suggesting a lower price?
A reason for a higher rate would be that a different lender or source of finance would be required.
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# 3
GMS
Old 11-09-2012, 11:55 PM
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As above. Sounds like somebody has read the Daily Mail and taken on board one of many articles which they think can be used to their advantage.

Get a horticulturist round and ask their opinon on the garden without mentioning knotweed. They will soon notice if it is there.
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You should note that this site doesn't check my status as a mortgage adviser, so you need to take my word for it. This signature is here as I follow MSE's Mortgage Adviser Code of Conduct. Any posts on here are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as financial advice.
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# 4
Dave6335
Old 12-09-2012, 12:02 AM
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Many thanks to both for the replies. Yes they have offered a lower price stating that was because of the higher rate mortgage they are only able to get, I have my own suspicions about the plant as it has been in the corner for well over 20 years and never spread further.
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# 5
Dave6335
Old 12-09-2012, 12:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DVardysShadow View Post
Is there actually knotweed? Lots of people would just run a mile - are they suggesting a lower price?
A reason for a higher rate would be that a different lender or source of finance would be required.
Quick question. When you refer to a different lender do you mean some other body than a recognised mortgage lender?
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# 6
GMS
Old 12-09-2012, 12:29 AM
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My cynical view:

'Hello sir I like your car for sale, however the wibbly washer is clearly showing signs of wear which will increase my servicing costs so instead of 6,000 I will offer you 4,000'

You have the choice of:

'Pi55 off there is no such thing as a wibbly washer' or '4,000, a right result given the wibbly washer issues.'

Firstly know the product. Find out if there are issues. If so deal accordingly. If not then ignore nonsense.

No lender will price higher for a property which is unsuitable security. Higher pricing is usually for higher risk of a defaulting customer, not a property which will be worthwhile.

If knotweed is an issue ask yourself as a lender do you want to get involved, regardless of rate?
I am a Mortgage Adviser
You should note that this site doesn't check my status as a mortgage adviser, so you need to take my word for it. This signature is here as I follow MSE's Mortgage Adviser Code of Conduct. Any posts on here are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as financial advice.
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# 7
Dave6335
Old 12-09-2012, 12:58 AM
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Thank you again. A clearly understood reply.
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# 8
Jimbo1976
Old 12-09-2012, 7:49 AM
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Have a word with a surveyor. These guys are the eyes of the mortgage lender when they do the mortgage valuation. There are lenders who will lend on properties with Japanese Knotweed but "subject to valuers comments".

A good place to start is Colleys, whilst they are part of Lloyds Banking Group they are on most panels, so they are aware which lenders would lend and which wouldn't. If you look on their website go to the intermediary section and type in the post code of the property and it will give you the mobile number of the local surveyor.
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# 9
maninthestreet
Old 12-09-2012, 8:23 AM
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If that plant has been there for over 20 years and never spread, it's unlikely to be Japanese Knotweed, which is extremely invasive
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# 10
Flugelhorn
Old 12-09-2012, 8:25 AM
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suspect they can't get a lower rate mortgage for some othe reason and are hoping that you will help them out of their predicament
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# 11
Dave Ham
Old 12-09-2012, 8:39 AM
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As GMS articulatly points out, this is utter rubbish.

Japanese knotweed is quite rare and I have only had this issue twice. With the recent one a surveyor would not put a valuation on a property until it was ascertained if it was Japanese knotweed, or not.

They would not accept a picture and someone e-mailing, it had to be a personal visit. From memory it cost about 150 and within 48 hours an appropriate professional confirmed it was not and therefore the valuer signed off to proceed (at full price)

My guess would be that the "bidder" has been given the nod by the Estate Agent the circumstances for the sale and hopeful that it is viewed as additional monies so sell quick.

You done the right thing asking on here, stern words with your Estate Agent me thinks...

All the best
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# 12
Dave6335
Old 12-09-2012, 10:43 AM
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Again, a big thank you to all who have taken the time to reply.

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# 13
HelenDaveKids
Old 12-09-2012, 11:54 AM
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We had japanese knotweed in the garden of the house we brought (builders pointed it out as i wouldn't have known). I googled it, then went and bought a 12 bottle of stuff from asda (can't remember but i was one that killed jk and was a known brand, can hunt out in garage though if desperate to know exact one) I cut each piece down individually, used a syringe and injected through the bamboo type knots in the stalk as i went along so i didnt miss any, I burnt the rubbish (as illegal to take to council waste sites) then double bagged the ashes (as paranoid!). About 3 months later I had 2 little sprouts, did same to these, none since and that was april last year.
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# 14
Dave6335
Old 12-09-2012, 12:18 PM
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Hi HelenDaveKids,
I've been told to cut it all down (individually as you did) to about a foot tall and then use the compound that I've been given by a neighbour who is a horticulturist by profession (I believe it's a commercial version of Roundup, not available in the DIY stores, mixed with a vegetable oil to help it stick). I've got to do it now while the sap is draining back down into the root system. Only an estate agent has been to value the property (no surveyor yet as no official offers received) so I'll treat the stuff before anyone else gets there.
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# 15
holly hobby
Old 12-09-2012, 12:48 PM
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Little bit late to the party here, but as already stated, if this "plant" has not spread in 20 yrs it is NOT JK.

Even if it were, it can be eradicated, the issues with JK is that it spreads rapidly and is very hardy, with its party piece being that if it gets to the property, it can cause all kinds of problems inc subsidence from foundation damage (as it can get through cement and brick - this is why there are survey issues with it).

Colley's as mentioned by Jimbo - were Halifax's own surveyors - they are known (at least in my experience) to be extremely conservative/cautious in both mkt valuation and details of the survey itself (which won't have changed since their inclusion in the Lloyds Banking Group) - so if they give they OK you know that (all things being equal), any surveyor on behalf of your buyers lender should be ok too. As already suggested, if you don't want to remove it etc, a specialist horticultural report (which would be requested by the surveyor in any event if there were any suspicions) to identify the plant and issues and remedy, would top and tail the current perspectives buyers request.

But as I say, from your description and only IMHO, this isn't JK at all ....

Hope this helps

Holly

Last edited by holly hobby; 12-09-2012 at 1:16 PM.
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