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  • FIRST POST
    • Blonde94
    • By Blonde94 15th Jun 17, 4:01 PM
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    Blonde94
    What does the estate agent have to tell you?
    • #1
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:01 PM
    What does the estate agent have to tell you? 15th Jun 17 at 4:01 PM
    I was wondering what information the Estate Agent needs to disclose when you are viewing a property?


    I am currently in the process of buying our first flat, we have got all the mortgage approved, survey and searches back and a couple of changes to the lease done. we were reading our solicitors report with the view to exchange in a couple of days and complete a few weeks after when it popped up that the property was grade 2 listed.


    My partner and I would never have even viewed the property let alone put an offer in or get so close to buying the flat had we known it was a listed building.


    If the sale now does not go though because it's listed is there anyway of getting legal fees back from the estate agent?
Page 1
    • ST1991
    • By ST1991 15th Jun 17, 4:03 PM
    • 398 Posts
    • 220 Thanks
    ST1991
    • #2
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:03 PM
    • #2
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:03 PM
    Unfortunately, they don't have to specifically tell you anything unless you ask
    • Pixie5740
    • By Pixie5740 15th Jun 17, 4:06 PM
    • 10,816 Posts
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    Pixie5740
    • #3
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:06 PM
    • #3
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:06 PM
    The Estate Agent might not have known if the vendor had not disclosed it to them. This is why you have a survey done, so that you know these things before you exchange contracts and are committed to purchasing the property.
    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds nought and six, result misery.
    • Blonde94
    • By Blonde94 15th Jun 17, 4:09 PM
    • 3 Posts
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    Blonde94
    • #4
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:09 PM
    • #4
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:09 PM
    Thank you,


    My partner is sure he asked but we have nothing in writing it would have just been verbal so don't think we can do anything
    • Blonde94
    • By Blonde94 15th Jun 17, 4:13 PM
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    Blonde94
    • #5
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:13 PM
    • #5
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:13 PM
    The Estate Agent might not have known if the vendor had not disclosed it to them. This is why you have a survey done, so that you know these things before you exchange contracts and are committed to purchasing the property.
    Originally posted by Pixie5740

    Thank fully we noticed just before we exchanged. Now considering the options on if we pull out, re-negotiate our offer or just continue with the buying process
    • LEJC
    • By LEJC 15th Jun 17, 4:14 PM
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    LEJC
    • #6
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:14 PM
    • #6
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:14 PM
    I feel your pain...however the EA can and probably will tell you anything you might want to hear to entice you into buying a property!

    t is up to you and your solicitor to ensure you know exactly what you are buying and any implication.

    I am currently midway though a purchase where a covenant has just been discovered that basically the EA could have told us about if they had wanted to...5 months into the purchase with associated costs and we may now need to pull out purely because we cannot physically meet the requirement to buy.
    frugal October...£45.59 of £40 food shopping spend for the 2 of us!
    Jan £41.60/£40
    Feb £54.58/£40...gave up this month 15/2
    Mar £37.02/£40...lots of help via a gift card and vouchers
    May
    2017 toiletries 131 out 101 in ...£14.92 spend
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 15th Jun 17, 4:23 PM
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    Surrey_EA
    • #7
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:23 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:23 PM
    Your solicitor will have received a form called a Sellers Property Information Form. This will have been sent to your solicitor by the solicitor acting for the vendor, usually very early on in the process.

    One of the questions is:

    Is the property or any part of it a listed building?

    I would be asking why your solicitor didn't draw your attention to the information contained in this form far earlier in the process, it shouldn't be coming to light when you are nearly ready to exchange.
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 15th Jun 17, 4:53 PM
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    Surrey_EA
    • #8
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:53 PM
    • #8
    • 15th Jun 17, 4:53 PM
    I am currently midway though a purchase where a covenant has just been discovered that basically the EA could have told us about if they had wanted to...5 months into the purchase with associated costs and we may now need to pull out purely because we cannot physically meet the requirement to buy.
    Originally posted by LEJC
    Are you certain the EA was aware of the covenant? Most EAs are not experts on interpreting covenants, that's what you have a solicitor for.
    • LEJC
    • By LEJC 15th Jun 17, 5:11 PM
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    LEJC
    • #9
    • 15th Jun 17, 5:11 PM
    • #9
    • 15th Jun 17, 5:11 PM
    Are you certain the EA was aware of the covenant? Most EAs are not experts on interpreting covenants, that's what you have a solicitor for.
    Originally posted by Surrey_EA
    I believe the EA may have known about the covenant...it's age related and has been uncovered during the searches by our solicitor.

    I understand that a previous sale fell through although no idea if this was a factor. in that fail to complete or not.
    Although during our second viewing of the property the agent did advise us that last year they sold a neighbouring house,which would have the same restrictions as the one we intend/ed to purchase.

    Its been a very slow process as the sale was also a probate being dealt with by a solicitor who was not the selling solicitor and a set of executors who also formed a third layer in the chain on the selling side.

    TBH....the EA can only tell you what they know about an area or property or what they are told....Hindsight is the wonderful thing that always comes to light later.
    The restrictions on this particular property maybe should have been pointed out by those selling to the EA particularly as a large portion of the purchasing public may not be able to purchase this one!!!!

    ces't la vie
    Last edited by LEJC; 15-06-2017 at 5:21 PM.
    frugal October...£45.59 of £40 food shopping spend for the 2 of us!
    Jan £41.60/£40
    Feb £54.58/£40...gave up this month 15/2
    Mar £37.02/£40...lots of help via a gift card and vouchers
    May
    2017 toiletries 131 out 101 in ...£14.92 spend
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 15th Jun 17, 5:21 PM
    • 1,056 Posts
    • 1,249 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    I believe the EA may have known about the covenant...it's age related and has been uncovered during the searches by our solicitor.

    I understand that a previous sale fell through although no idea if this was a factor. in that fail to complete or not.

    Its been a very slow process as the sale was also a probate being dealt with by a solicitor who was not the selling solicitor and a set of executors who also formed a third layer in the chain on the selling side.

    ces't la vie
    Originally posted by LEJC
    As ever, the agent is only is good as the information they are given. However, part of that should be knowing which questions to ask, and any half decent EA should know which buildings near to them come with an age restriction.

    A minor point, but I would be surprised if the covenant turned up amongst the search results, it is likely to have been referred to within the Land registry title.
    • LEJC
    • By LEJC 15th Jun 17, 5:24 PM
    • 9,015 Posts
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    LEJC
    Sorry my apologies I've just amened my post to include some extra info and you may have replied whilst doing that....

    but back to topic and the op's original question....we have digressed with my situation which whilst is of interest to me may make them feel I have hijacked their thread!
    frugal October...£45.59 of £40 food shopping spend for the 2 of us!
    Jan £41.60/£40
    Feb £54.58/£40...gave up this month 15/2
    Mar £37.02/£40...lots of help via a gift card and vouchers
    May
    2017 toiletries 131 out 101 in ...£14.92 spend
    • dares_uk
    • By dares_uk 16th Jun 17, 10:38 AM
    • 50 Posts
    • 15 Thanks
    dares_uk
    On a similar note,


    We specifically asked the estate agent at the beginning before putting in an offer if there was any restrictive covenants, they answered 'No' , we pushed them more to check, apparently the vendor had written 'none' on the information form, and then we got the EA to phone the vendor to double check, and they came back saying 'cant build on the side of the house, due to drains'
    So we put an offer in, eventually had an offer accepted and progressed with the purchase.


    As soon as our solicitors got the particulars we had them check about the covenants, and subsequently found what we didn't want. We went along the route of getting a 'letter of permission' from the beneficiary.


    Later on the vendor pulled out for unknown reasons after 11 weeks.


    We have subsequently complained to the EA about this issue, and another about piece of the land not being included in the sale that was advertised.


    The EA have washed their hands and basically said they done adequate checks.


    I will now be forwarding my complain to the property ombudsman.


    Moral of the story, 'Don't believe Estate Agents.'
    • Guest101
    • By Guest101 16th Jun 17, 10:38 AM
    • 15,147 Posts
    • 14,733 Thanks
    Guest101
    I was wondering what information the Estate Agent needs to disclose when you are viewing a property?


    I am currently in the process of buying our first flat, we have got all the mortgage approved, survey and searches back and a couple of changes to the lease done. we were reading our solicitors report with the view to exchange in a couple of days and complete a few weeks after when it popped up that the property was grade 2 listed.


    My partner and I would never have even viewed the property let alone put an offer in or get so close to buying the flat had we known it was a listed building.


    If the sale now does not go though because it's listed is there anyway of getting legal fees back from the estate agent?
    Originally posted by Blonde94


    Nothing at all. That's not their job.
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 16th Jun 17, 10:51 AM
    • 1,056 Posts
    • 1,249 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    On a similar note,


    We specifically asked the estate agent at the beginning before putting in an offer if there was any restrictive covenants, they answered 'No' , we pushed them more to check, apparently the vendor had written 'none' on the information form, and then we got the EA to phone the vendor to double check, and they came back saying 'cant build on the side of the house, due to drains'
    So we put an offer in, eventually had an offer accepted and progressed with the purchase.
    Originally posted by dares_uk
    To a certain degree EAs have to rely upon the information given to them by the vendor. It appears in this instance the EA had asked the vendor whether there were any restrictive covenants, and the vendor had replied in writing that there were none.

    It is of course possible to obtain a copy of the title for a property you may be interested in from the Land Registry website, and this will tell you whether any covenants exist.

    Moral of the story: "Don't always expect the vendor's estate agent to do your solicitors job for them."
    • dares_uk
    • By dares_uk 16th Jun 17, 11:22 AM
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    dares_uk
    Although saying that its down to solicitors to check is correct but the estate agent also
    has the responsibility to provide you with the correct information/answers so you are able to make an informed decision (consumer rights and mis-descriptions act)
    • Guest101
    • By Guest101 16th Jun 17, 11:28 AM
    • 15,147 Posts
    • 14,733 Thanks
    Guest101
    Although saying that its down to solicitors to check is correct but the estate agent also
    has the responsibility to provide you with the correct information/answers so you are able to make an informed decision (consumer rights and mis-descriptions act)
    Originally posted by dares_uk


    You aren't buying from an estate agent, so I'm not sure the consumer rights would apply. - happy to be corrected.


    Mis-descriptions are only as true as the estate agents knows, if they don't know they can be on the wrong side
    • ssparks2003
    • By ssparks2003 16th Jun 17, 11:33 AM
    • 133 Posts
    • 181 Thanks
    ssparks2003
    Before you decide to proceed with the sale please make sure that you are aware of what owning a grade 2 property will mean and the additional costs and time delays that you will incur should you wish to change anything.
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 16th Jun 17, 11:35 AM
    • 1,056 Posts
    • 1,249 Thanks
    Surrey_EA
    Although saying that its down to solicitors to check is correct but the estate agent also
    has the responsibility to provide you with the correct information/answers so you are able to make an informed decision (consumer rights and mis-descriptions act)
    Originally posted by dares_uk
    As I said above, to a certain degree the estate agent has to rely on the information provided to them by their client, the vendor of the property being sold.

    It seems that in line with advice from the National Association of Estate Agents to help comply with the Consumer protection Regulations (The Property Misdescriptions Act was repealed in 2013, and no longer applies), the estate agents asked the vendor to complete a form to provide information about the property, and one of the question seems to be whether any covenants affect the property, and the vendor had declared that there were none.
    • aneary
    • By aneary 16th Jun 17, 11:42 AM
    • 463 Posts
    • 326 Thanks
    aneary
    Sorry I don't actually get what the issue with buying a grade 2 listed flat.

    Unless I'm wrong Grade 2 listed refers to external only as a flat owner generally you won't be changing the external make up of the building.

    Yes the costs of repairs may be higher but that is what a sink fund is for and this should be in place as part of your service charge.
    • Surrey_EA
    • By Surrey_EA 16th Jun 17, 11:46 AM
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    Surrey_EA
    Unless I'm wrong Grade 2 listed refers to external only as a flat owner generally you won't be changing the external make up of the building.
    Originally posted by aneary
    If I recall correctly Grade II listing applies to any alterations that materially affect the character of the building, be they internal or external.

    For example if I wanted to take a wall out in a property I would normally only need to obtain building regulations approval to confirm the work had been carried out correctly, and the freeholders permission in the even of it being a leasehold property. However, in a listed property I would also need to obtain listed building consent.
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