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  • FIRST POST
    • Palang
    • By Palang 17th Dec 17, 1:17 AM
    • 2Posts
    • 2Thanks
    Palang
    Scary Homebuyer report
    • #1
    • 17th Dec 17, 1:17 AM
    Scary Homebuyer report 17th Dec 17 at 1:17 AM
    Hi,

    Apologies in advance for the long post. We are currently in the process of selling our flat and buying a house with a garden. We've found a house which we really love, and have had our offer accepted. Our mortgage has been also been approved. The property seemed to be in a very good condition to us. It is detached and has had some extension work and garage conversion done. Since it is a 1965 build, we decided to go with a HomeBuyer survey. The overall opinion of the surveyor is positive, however he has pointed out quite a few urgent issues that need to be looked into. Having read them, I'm now really worried, as we were not expecting this many urgent problems. I was wondering if anyone has come across these issues in their experience and can point out whether or not they are as bad as they appear to be, or if the surveyor is covering their back. Many Thanks

    Our overall opinion of the property
    Following my inspection I found no reason why you should not purchase the property but I have recommended some improvement works. The proposed purchase price of £680,000 reflects the need for the work.

    E2 Roof coverings
    The main roof is pitched and covered with plain clay tiles. The bay roofs is also tiled. The main roof is lined with sarking felt. There are lead flashings to the roof abutments. The roof covering appears to be the original. There is a flat roof to the rear extension with a felt covering.
    I noted the following Condition Rating 3 items:
    The roof covering to the rear extension is in poor condition with signs of severe weathering. There is no sign of leakage internally at present but this could occur at any time. The roof covering needs replacing. Due to the poor condition of the covering, there could be unseen damage to the roof deck and supports and you should budget for their repair/replacement as necessary. Insulation and ventilation are important elements of flat roof construction and will need to be upgraded to meet current Building Regulations. It should be appreciated that
    the roofing timbers may need upgrading at this time due to the span of roofing coverage and lack of central support.

    E3 Rainwater pipes and gutters
    The rainwater goods are a mixture of plastic and cast-iron sections. Some of the rainwater downpipes pass below ground. They are assumed to be connected to a suitable discharge point such as a drain or soakaway but this cannot be verified without further investigations.
    I noted the following Condition Rating 3 items: There are insufficient downpipes to drain the guttering and this could cause overflowing in heavy rain. A design check should be carried out by an appropriately qualified person. Higher capacity guttering or additional downpipes may need to be installed. Condition Rating 3.

    E4 Main walls
    The main walls to the original parts of the property appear to be of cavity brick construction with some rendered masonry and tile hung elevations. The walls have been built with a felt damp-proof course. Cavity wall insulation appears to have been retro-fitted. The rear extension walls appear to be of cavity construction and have brick elevations.
    I noted the following Condition Rating 3 items:
    There is evidence of structural movement in the form of cracking to the front and rear elevations. This appears to be caused by lack of lintels over some openings. It is not possible to determine whether the movement is old, or on-going in nature on the basis of a single inspection and within the scope of a Homebuyer survey. Therefore Further Investigation is required by a Structural Engineer or Chartered Building Surveyor. When the further
    investigation is carried out, the support for the first floor side extension should be investigated to confirm adequacy of the load from above. This was not able to be seen during our inspection. Upgrade and repair may be very costly should this element be proved to be inadequate.
    The converted garage area only has half thick brick walls. The walls have cracked externally and are damp internally. These walls are considered to be of substandard construction and require upgrading which may be both costly and very disruptive. It would appear that further damp proofing work is necessary. Additional advice and repair is needed by a member of the Property Care Association or similar contractor. As a precaution, the whole property should be inspected.
    High damp meter readings have been recorded to walls throughout the ground floor where the evidence suggests that the damp proof course is being bridged by high external ground levels and the external render finish. External ground level should be lowered. The external render should be properly terminated above the damp proof course. It may well be necessary to replace the affected plaster internally with a special plaster if damp persists. Condition Rating 3.

    F3 Internal Walls and partitions
    The internal walls and partitions are a mix of solid masonry and studwork partitioning. Most of the walls have a solid plastered finish. Ceramic tiling is present in the bathroom, en-suite, kitchen and cloakroom. Timber paneling is present in the several rooms to the property. A textured wall finish is present in several rooms. I noted the following Condition Rating 3 items:
    I found evidence of damp to several rooms on the ground floor. Please refer to the advice provided in Section E4. Further investigation and repair is needed by a member of the Property Care Association or similar contractor. As a precaution, the whole property should be inspected. Depending on age, the textured wall finishes could have an asbestos content. These are easily disturbed and this introduces the risk of releasing harmful asbestos fibres. I refer you to my comments in Section J3. You should therefore have the asbestos content checked by a specialist. Further Investigation. This is considered to be a potential safety risk and requires urgent attention. Condition Rating 3.

    G6 Drainage
    I believe the property is connected by a shared drainage system to the public sewer. I could not lift the inspection chambers. It was not possible to confirm whether this property has separate foul and surface water system. Legal Advisers should clarify the arrangement. The above ground waste pipes are of a mixture of plastic and cast-iron. As noted in the Limitations, our inspection of the drainage was limited. There were no signs of flooding or drainage problems on site. I recommend that you commission a precautionary CCTV survey of the underground drainage because of the structural movement noted in Section E4, the proximity of the trees to the drainage and the shrinkable soil in the locality.
Page 1
    • PokerPlayer111
    • By PokerPlayer111 17th Dec 17, 8:29 AM
    • 299 Posts
    • 96 Thanks
    PokerPlayer111
    • #2
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:29 AM
    • #2
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:29 AM
    Interesting, what price did you agree to buy it for? was it same as the £680,000 they suggest?

    Anyone know...do they sometimes suggest a price under what was agreed?



    "It may well be necessary to replace the affected plaster internally with a special plaster if damp persists."

    Just so you know my mum had the specialist plaster which did nothing for her damp issue, she then had tanking and that also did not stop her damp issue.
    Last edited by PokerPlayer111; 17-12-2017 at 8:32 AM.
    • marlot
    • By marlot 17th Dec 17, 8:39 AM
    • 3,608 Posts
    • 2,731 Thanks
    marlot
    • #3
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:39 AM
    • #3
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:39 AM
    The two that jump out to me are the flat roof and the ex-garage walls - both need to be replaced.

    Does it have UPVC windows? I wonder if replacing the wooden ones led to the structural movement? Sounds like some strengthening is in order.

    You also need to lower the ground levels outside - this could be as simple as lowering some patio or rescuplting the garden - you'd have to make up your mind on that.

    The gutters may or may not overflow in heavy rain - you could opt for just waiting to see.
    Last edited by marlot; 17-12-2017 at 8:42 AM.
    • PokerPlayer111
    • By PokerPlayer111 17th Dec 17, 8:41 AM
    • 299 Posts
    • 96 Thanks
    PokerPlayer111
    • #4
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:41 AM
    • #4
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:41 AM
    "Depending on age, the textured wall finishes could have an asbestos content. These are easily disturbed and this introduces the risk of releasing harmful asbestos fibres."

    Oh thats great, thanks for not even testing it survey dude, anyone can speculate on that based on build age.
    • marlot
    • By marlot 17th Dec 17, 8:43 AM
    • 3,608 Posts
    • 2,731 Thanks
    marlot
    • #5
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:43 AM
    • #5
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:43 AM
    "Depending on age, the textured wall finishes could have an asbestos content. These are easily disturbed and this introduces the risk of releasing harmful asbestos fibres."

    Oh thats great, thanks for not even testing it survey dude, anyone can speculate on that based on build age.
    Originally posted by PokerPlayer111
    You don't get much with a homebuyer survey! That will be a standard item to include with any textured wall paper observation!
    • PokerPlayer111
    • By PokerPlayer111 17th Dec 17, 8:53 AM
    • 299 Posts
    • 96 Thanks
    PokerPlayer111
    • #6
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:53 AM
    • #6
    • 17th Dec 17, 8:53 AM
    You don't get much with a homebuyer survey! That will be a standard item to include with any textured wall paper observation!
    Originally posted by marlot
    Oh yeah i can see, should be high importance to check that as standard and they dont. Health comes 1st.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 17th Dec 17, 9:53 AM
    • 18,427 Posts
    • 16,629 Thanks
    AdrianC
    • #7
    • 17th Dec 17, 9:53 AM
    • #7
    • 17th Dec 17, 9:53 AM
    Since it is a 1965 build, we decided to go with a HomeBuyer survey.
    Originally posted by Palang
    52 years ago... A lot can go wrong with a property in over half a century...

    Our overall opinion of the property
    Following my inspection I found no reason why you should not purchase the property but I have recommended some improvement works. The proposed purchase price of £680,000 reflects the need for the work.
    So there y'go. You're paying the right price for the property in the condition it's in. No grounds for further negotiation.

    E2 Roof coverings
    ...I noted the following Condition Rating 3 items:
    The roof covering to the rear extension is in poor condition with signs of severe weathering. There is no sign of leakage internally at present but this could occur at any time. The roof covering needs replacing. Due to the poor condition of the covering, there could be unseen damage to the roof deck and supports and you should budget for their repair/replacement as necessary. Insulation and ventilation are important elements of flat roof construction and will need to be upgraded to meet current Building Regulations. It should be appreciated that
    the roofing timbers may need upgrading at this time due to the span of roofing coverage and lack of central support.
    That flat roof's knackered, and is going to need not just replacing but upgrading to modern standards.

    E3 Rainwater pipes and gutters
    ...
    I noted the following Condition Rating 3 items: There are insufficient downpipes to drain the guttering and this could cause overflowing in heavy rain. A design check should be carried out by an appropriately qualified person. Higher capacity guttering or additional downpipes may need to be installed.
    If only we were at a time of year you could easily arrange to visit in heavy rain, and see if they're coping... Not a massive job if they do need upgrading.

    E4 Main walls
    ...
    I noted the following Condition Rating 3 items:
    There is evidence of structural movement in the form of cracking to the front and rear elevations. This appears to be caused by lack of lintels over some openings. It is not possible to determine whether the movement is old, or on-going in nature on the basis of a single inspection and within the scope of a Homebuyer survey. Therefore Further Investigation is required by a Structural Engineer or Chartered Building Surveyor. When the further investigation is carried out, the support for the first floor side extension should be investigated to confirm adequacy of the load from above. This was not able to be seen during our inspection. Upgrade and repair may be very costly should this element be proved to be inadequate.
    There may be some shonkily built bits, with no lintel supporting the openings and not strong enough for the extension. Get a structural guy in.

    The converted garage area only has half thick brick walls. The walls have cracked externally and are damp internally. These walls are considered to be of substandard construction and require upgrading which may be both costly and very disruptive. It would appear that further damp proofing work is necessary.
    It was borderline for a garage, it's totally inadequate for living space.

    High damp meter readings have been recorded to walls throughout the ground floor where the evidence suggests that the damp proof course is being bridged by high external ground levels and the external render finish. External ground level should be lowered. The external render should be properly terminated above the damp proof course.
    A day of DIY with a spade and a hammer/chisel to uncover the DPC.

    G6 Drainage
    I believe the property is connected by a shared drainage system to the public sewer. I could not lift the inspection chambers. It was not possible to confirm whether this property has separate foul and surface water system. Legal Advisers should clarify the arrangement. The above ground waste pipes are of a mixture of plastic and cast-iron. As noted in the Limitations, our inspection of the drainage was limited. There were no signs of flooding or drainage problems on site. I recommend that you commission a precautionary CCTV survey of the underground drainage because of the structural movement noted in Section E4, the proximity of the trees to the drainage and the shrinkable soil in the locality.
    "I didn't look, but this is the worst-case scenario..." backside-covering.

    Oh yeah i can see, should be high importance to check that as standard and they dont. Health comes 1st.
    Originally posted by PokerPlayer111
    Don't be so melodramatic.

    And what are you expecting for the couple of hundred quid that a basic homebuyer survey costs? There might be asbestos. If it worries you, get a specialist asbestos survey - it'll cost a LOT more than the homebuyer did.
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 17th Dec 17, 10:54 AM
    • 8,552 Posts
    • 9,014 Thanks
    davidmcn
    • #8
    • 17th Dec 17, 10:54 AM
    • #8
    • 17th Dec 17, 10:54 AM
    Oh yeah i can see, should be high importance to check that as standard and they dont. Health comes 1st.
    Originally posted by PokerPlayer111
    It's perfectly healthy if it stays where it is. Only a concern if you were to drill into it or break it up and then breathe in the dust.

    If you want specialist testing of every suspect bit of the house then you could be chucking another few hundred quid at it.
    • fromtheshires
    • By fromtheshires 17th Dec 17, 11:03 AM
    • 296 Posts
    • 245 Thanks
    fromtheshires
    • #9
    • 17th Dec 17, 11:03 AM
    • #9
    • 17th Dec 17, 11:03 AM
    This isn't scary. This is standard surveyor BS for the majority of it.

    Haven't looked, so doom and gloom just in case.
    It's old and may need replacing at some unknown point down the line and be costly...

    Ignore the damp meters they use. They don't work and are designed for wood, not plasterboard / brick. The only real issue is the movement, however if the windows have been replaced, the cracks could be from that as when I had my windows replaced the plaster board cracked and ran lines from all the hammering etc.
    • shortcrust
    • By shortcrust 17th Dec 17, 11:24 AM
    • 2,108 Posts
    • 3,225 Thanks
    shortcrust
    Oh yeah i can see, should be high importance to check that as standard and they dont. Health comes 1st.
    Originally posted by PokerPlayer111
    Half the country lives with stuff like that. Itís not as big a deal as it sounds, and thatís not the service youíre paying for when you get a homebuyers report. If you want it investigated then you pay for it. Homebuyers are adults who should take responsibility.
    • PokerPlayer111
    • By PokerPlayer111 17th Dec 17, 12:03 PM
    • 299 Posts
    • 96 Thanks
    PokerPlayer111
    It's perfectly healthy if it stays where it is. Only a concern if you were to drill into it or break it up and then breathe in the dust.
    Originally posted by davidmcn
    Or if you get it in eyes but yeah if aware and dont disturb it sure no problem.

    Half the country lives with stuff like that. It’s not as big a deal as it sounds, and that’s not the service you’re paying for when you get a homebuyers report. If you want it investigated then you pay for it. Homebuyers are adults who should take responsibility.
    Originally posted by shortcrust
    When considering houses im concerned about health as #1 above my investment. You can always make more money while you are healthy to deal with other house problems. But yeah i know this is not a big deal if aware and very common etc. But i did buy a 2003 house to avoid any black mould or asbestos, just cant be bothered with stuff like that.
    • Palang
    • By Palang 17th Dec 17, 1:13 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Palang
    Thank you all for taking the time to comment on this. I suppose the highest priority issues here are the main walls and the flat roof over the extension.

    The asking price was £700k, which we managed to negotiate down to £680k. I suppose we have been very naive in this case, since the property "appears" to be more expensive than the 700k asking price and I should have known that there is something wrong.
    • ed67812
    • By ed67812 17th Dec 17, 2:48 PM
    • 158 Posts
    • 57 Thanks
    ed67812
    I'd go nowhere near a 60s house if asbestos in textured walls worries you.
    • Wittsend
    • By Wittsend 9th Jul 18, 7:32 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Wittsend
    The survey of my house has just recommended 'further investigation' of the 'appears to be' asbestos flue, the garage roof (its flat, last re-done 15 years ago and not leaking) and the electrics. The buyer wants to put a second fuse box in as he has an extensive music system which requires more power. I panicked when the estate agent called, and I have already dropped £15k off the price as the buyer has dropped £30k off his. Got my own asbestos inspection tomorrow. Not doing the garage roof - they always say that to cover their back and I know its sound. Electrics??? The house is a 1975 build - so he is bringing in an electrical engineer and we will see. I know there are some issues with my new house, but nothing I wouldn't expect in a house of its age and the price I paid. Not looking forward to the next few days - I haven't seen their report, my estate agent just phoned today and asked for dates for him to arrange for the 'further investigation' visits! I am never going through buying and selling again after this. I have been here for 29 years and don't remember all this stress. Hope you get some good advice.
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