Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 12th Apr 17, 6:07 PM
    • 150Posts
    • 89Thanks
    sultanabran
    Buyers solicitor querying doors
    • #1
    • 12th Apr 17, 6:07 PM
    Buyers solicitor querying doors 12th Apr 17 at 6:07 PM
    I know the standard response is to go with what your solicitor advises, but I thought I'd put this here to see what kinda outcomes can happen. (I'm in Scotland by the way).

    I bought my current house in 2005. In 2007 I had all the windows replaced and external doors replaced with new. Only changes were changing them from brown to white uPVC, removing the front patio doors and bricking this back up and putting a window in (putting it back to original essentially) and swapping out the patio doors in the dining room with French doors.

    Fast forward to now and I'm currently in the phase of selling where the solicitors go back and further between each other. My buyers solicitor has come back and questioned the French doors at the back as the surveyor noted it as a change in my home report. I did say to the surveyor at the time it was a swap but he said he still had to mention it.

    I've checked back through my paperwork and theres no mention in the survey when I bought the house of any of the patio doors. I still have the estate agents schedule and sadly it doesn't have them in the photos, but does refer to them in the description.

    Is my buyer's solicitor just being pedantic? What is likely to happen in this situation? It seems like all I need to achieve is prove that there were patio doors there when I moved in.

    I have been communicating with my buyer direct and he doesn't seem bothered by it and isn't sure what the hold up is. Should I speak to him and get him to push his solicitor to "get on with it"? This seems to be the only sticking point to conclusion of missives.
    Last edited by sultanabran; 26-04-2017 at 4:56 PM.
Page 1
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 12th Apr 17, 6:28 PM
    • 5,262 Posts
    • 4,923 Thanks
    davidmcn
    • #2
    • 12th Apr 17, 6:28 PM
    • #2
    • 12th Apr 17, 6:28 PM
    What exactly is the question? Are they expecting to see a Completion Certificate for your alterations? And/or for the previous alterations?
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 12th Apr 17, 6:35 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    • #3
    • 12th Apr 17, 6:35 PM
    • #3
    • 12th Apr 17, 6:35 PM
    I believe so yes. Do I have any paperwork for planning permission or anything like that I guess. My point is that the doors where there when I moved in and that all I've done is swap them out.
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 12th Apr 17, 6:48 PM
    • 23,263 Posts
    • 65,260 Thanks
    Doozergirl
    • #4
    • 12th Apr 17, 6:48 PM
    • #4
    • 12th Apr 17, 6:48 PM
    In England and Wales you'd need either Building Regulstions Approval or a FENSA certificate. The glass needs to meet regulations. I assume that Scotland is similar in that respect.

    It would be indemnity policy territory.
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 12th Apr 17, 7:22 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    • #5
    • 12th Apr 17, 7:22 PM
    • #5
    • 12th Apr 17, 7:22 PM
    I have receipts and paperwork for the installation of the windows and doors and the companies still in business and I'm certain they met the standards at the time. I think the issue is the solicitor thinks I changed a window for French doors.
    • stator
    • By stator 12th Apr 17, 8:11 PM
    • 5,548 Posts
    • 3,535 Thanks
    stator
    • #6
    • 12th Apr 17, 8:11 PM
    • #6
    • 12th Apr 17, 8:11 PM
    If it was a french door/pation door when you moved in then your response should simply be to state that was the case and tell them you have not widened the opening so can't provide any evidence of alterations or how they were done. Tell them that if they are worried they should consult a structural engineer or similar and that you are happy to provide access to the engineer.

    If the buyer's solicitor is asking for a FENSA certificate for the windows and doors and you can't find one, order a new one on the internet for £20. No need for an indemnity.
    Changing the world, one sarcastic comment at a time.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 12th Apr 17, 8:44 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    • #7
    • 12th Apr 17, 8:44 PM
    • #7
    • 12th Apr 17, 8:44 PM
    If it was a french door/pation door when you moved in then your response should simply be to state that was the case and tell them you have not widened the opening so can't provide any evidence of alterations or how they were done. Tell them that if they are worried they should consult a structural engineer or similar and that you are happy to provide access to the engineer.

    If the buyer's solicitor is asking for a FENSA certificate for the windows and doors and you can't find one, order a new one on the internet for £20. No need for an indemnity.
    Originally posted by stator
    FENSA doesn't apply in Scotland I don't believe. Having spoken to the buyer in the past, it's not even him but his solicitor thats pushing for all this. Guess I just need to wait and see what the solicitors say.
    • G_M
    • By G_M 12th Apr 17, 9:03 PM
    • 39,604 Posts
    • 45,096 Thanks
    G_M
    • #8
    • 12th Apr 17, 9:03 PM
    • #8
    • 12th Apr 17, 9:03 PM
    I have receipts and paperwork for the installation of the windows and doors and the companies still in business and I'm certain they met the standards at the time. I think the issue is the solicitor thinks I changed a window for French doors.
    Originally posted by sultanabran
    No idea if FENSAoperates in Scotland, but I'm prety sure you still have Building Regulations.

    If so, the changes (not just the French doors) would need BR certification. If not by FENDA, then by some other competent person, or the local council.

    So :
    1) what 'paperwork' do you have?

    2) have you contacted the installer (who is still in busienss) and asked for the required paperwork (asuming you don't have it)?

    3) if all that fails, offer the buyer an indemnity insurance policy
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 12th Apr 17, 11:08 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    • #9
    • 12th Apr 17, 11:08 PM
    • #9
    • 12th Apr 17, 11:08 PM
    No idea if FENSAoperates in Scotland, but I'm prety sure you still have Building Regulations.

    If so, the changes (not just the French doors) would need BR certification. If not by FENDA, then by some other competent person, or the local council.

    So :
    1) what 'paperwork' do you have? Just the paperwork from the window company showing the work they were doing, the windows chosen and a receipt.

    2) have you contacted the installer (who is still in busienss) and asked for the required paperwork (asuming you don't have it)? Not yet

    3) if all that fails, offer the buyer an indemnity insurance policy My conveyancer hasn't mentioned this option yet. I'll see what she says when she gets back to me.
    Originally posted by G_M
    Replies above.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 18th Apr 17, 6:33 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    This is still ongoing. My conveyancer has told me that the buyers solicitor has contacted the surveyor. I'm not sure exactly what they are trying to find out. I spoke to the guy that I bought the house from. The patio doors were in when he moved in, in 2001. So it's been altered for 16 years. If it was going to collapse, it would have done so by now!

    Is indemnity insurance an option in Scotland for not having a building warrant?
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 18th Apr 17, 7:19 PM
    • 5,262 Posts
    • 4,923 Thanks
    davidmcn
    Is indemnity insurance an option in Scotland for not having a building warrant?
    Originally posted by sultanabran
    Yes. It can get sorted one way or another, don't worry.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 18th Apr 17, 9:19 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    Yes. It can get sorted one way or another, don't worry.
    Originally posted by davidmcn
    Thanks for the reassurance. Any idea what the surveyor can tell him? Why would he even ask him?
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 18th Apr 17, 9:42 PM
    • 5,262 Posts
    • 4,923 Thanks
    davidmcn
    Any idea what the surveyor can tell him? Why would he even ask him?
    Originally posted by sultanabran
    They ask the surveyor because the surveyor is the impartial professional who has actually looked at your house, and in the absence of any paperwork might be able to give an educated guess about what alterations have been made and what consents they might have needed.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 26th Apr 17, 5:00 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    And so it goes on.

    My buyers solicitor has come back and basically asked for evidence that the alterations have been there for 20 years or for council consent.

    No mention of indemnity insurance. How am I supposed to prove something happened 20 years ago?! I can get proof of at least 16 years as the guy I bought the house from told me the patio doors were there when he bought the place in 2001.

    I don't want to go down the route of getting a Letter of Comfort from the local council as that can open up a whole can of worms as I imagine they will check the work against current regulations?

    Also curious as to why the surveyor never mentioned this when I bought the house!
    • ThePants999
    • By ThePants999 26th Apr 17, 6:36 PM
    • 656 Posts
    • 737 Thanks
    ThePants999
    Just say "neither are available" and punt the ball back into their court - and if you have a channel to push the buyer into getting his solicitor to shut up and get over it, I'd be using it

    I bought a house with a conservatory and two extensions. My solicitor wanted evidence of planning permission / BR compliance, the vendors said "sorry, don't have it" and I told her to shut up and get over it. Everyone happy.
    Last edited by ThePants999; 26-04-2017 at 6:39 PM.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 26th Apr 17, 7:52 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    Just say "neither are available" and punt the ball back into their court - and if you have a channel to push the buyer into getting his solicitor to shut up and get over it, I'd be using it
    Originally posted by ThePants999
    Did just that. The buyer wasn't even aware of the hold up, calling his solicitor tomorrow.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 26th Apr 17, 11:30 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    Just out of interest, is there any time limit for the local authority to enforce for a lack of a building warrant in Scotland?

    EDIT: If anyone ever stumbles across this in the future. It appears that online England, in Scotland, no, there isn't a time limit.
    Last edited by sultanabran; 11-05-2017 at 7:57 PM.
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 11th May 17, 4:02 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    Sigh, so I still haven't concluded missives. My neighbour is willing to sign an affidavit to say the alteration is more than 20 years old (they moved in next door in the early 90s and it had already been altered). My solicitors been waiting over a week for my buyers solicitor to come back and say this is okay.

    Do they get off on putting everyone's life on hold?! That'll be 10 weeks on Tuesday since I accepted his offer.

    Fuming but feel like there's nothing I can do. My buyer can't even get a hold of his own solicitor to chase him up.
    • Thrugelmir
    • By Thrugelmir 11th May 17, 6:40 PM
    • 53,716 Posts
    • 46,481 Thanks
    Thrugelmir
    My neighbour is willing to sign an affidavit to say the alteration is more than 20 years old (they moved in next door in the early 90s and it had already been altered).
    Originally posted by sultanabran
    Not proof though. Documentary evidence is proof.
    “ “Bull markets are born on pessimism, grow on skepticism, mature on optimism, and die on euphoria. The time of maximum pessimism is the best time to buy, and the time of maximum optimism is the best time to sell.” Sir John Marks Templeton
    • sultanabran
    • By sultanabran 11th May 17, 7:24 PM
    • 150 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    sultanabran
    Not proof though. Documentary evidence is proof.
    Originally posted by Thrugelmir
    Guess I'll find out when he finally gets around to responding. If it's not sufficient then it's impossible to prove.

    Even if by some miracle, I was able to get in touch with the person that owned the house 20+ years ago, the likelihood of them having the paperwork for it is 0%

    When I spoke to the buyer yesterday, he said his solicitor still hasn't even mentioned any of this to him. He only knows about it because of me telling him! Another annoyance is none of this was ever raised as an issue when I bought the house.
    Last edited by sultanabran; 11-05-2017 at 7:57 PM.
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

4,541Posts Today

8,767Users online

Martin's Twitter
  • RT @kcbelsham: @MartinSLewis . This Account would have to pay at least 12% to achieve £1 million in 35 years . Any ideas ( think it is impo?

  • Really? The highest interest rate amount for that volume of cash currently is 2%? You'd need an interest rate explo? https://t.co/6YRk1wLdTl

  • Today's Twitter poll: Is it acceptable to take your shirt off and go topless in the street when it's scorching in the UK?

  • Follow Martin