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  • FIRST POST
    • tomsheff
    • By tomsheff 8th Dec 18, 1:53 PM
    • 4Posts
    • 1Thanks
    tomsheff
    Buying a House that HAD Japanese Knotweed
    • #1
    • 8th Dec 18, 1:53 PM
    Buying a House that HAD Japanese Knotweed 8th Dec 18 at 1:53 PM
    Hi everyone,

    I am due to complete the purchase of my first house before Christmas, so I only have a week or so to go. Yesterday, I received lots of documents from my solicitor, and one had some notes about Japanese Knotweed. I had never heard of it at this point, so spent the night research (and worrying).

    It looks like the sellers found Knotweed shortly after their purchase in 2014, then spent £500 on the problem -- which is far less than the typical estimates I've seen, which look like £5,000 upwards. According to the document, the Knotweed is gone, but they don't seem to have done any follow-up checks.

    I've instructed my solicitor to tell them I want an independent expert to go in and verify the Knotweed has completely gone. I'm basically unsure of what to do should the expert determine the house is free of Knotweed (or I'll pull out) but I still have my doubts and it has certainly soured the purchase.

    This isn't a forever home, but probably more likely a 3-5 year one. My big concern is that the stigma of Knotweed will make the property difficult to sell -- even if the Knotweed has been gone for years. Just the mention of "Knotweed" might send potential buyers running a mile.

    I'm certainly no expert on the subject, so I'm not really sure what to do! All the stuff I've found online has been around problems with current, active Knotweed. There is nothing really out there about historical Knotweed that is now gone.

    Does anyone know how this problem might affect future sell-on value? Would you buy a house that once had Knotweed, if the problem was gone? And should I be looking to renegotiate now that this problem is known? To what extent seems reasonable?

    Sorry for so many questions, but I really don't know where else to turn! Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!
Page 2
    • Car1980
    • By Car1980 5th Apr 19, 10:52 AM
    • 273 Posts
    • 138 Thanks
    Car1980
    A relative bought a house in winter 2017 and loads of knotweed appeared in the spring. The TA6 form had a big 'no' tick in the Knotweed section. Ho hum.

    I sprayed it all in July 2018 using Roundup Provantage 480, which cost £50 + sprayer + mask and gloves.
    Any canes left over were injected with neat Roundup using a specialist injector gun in late September (£70).

    I've just been to survey the site and 85% has gone. The biggest stand has literally one shoot popping up.

    Repeat this year and I'd be surprised to see any more than a couple of shoots in 2020, and it should be gone in year 3.

    All for about £150. Get the right weed killer, stick to the schedule and it goes.
    Last edited by Car1980; 05-04-2019 at 10:57 AM.
    • cloo
    • By cloo 5th Apr 19, 11:00 AM
    • 1,202 Posts
    • 1,300 Thanks
    cloo
    I wouldn't pull out on a maybe. Recent research has suggested knotweed is not the threat it has been painted as and the mood is towards downgrading as a threat. It has never destroyed a building with a foundation as far as I know (can damage garden walls and sheds), and it *is* controllable - we lived in a place with a small stand and got rid of it ourselves over the course a few years with glyphosphate.
    • hazyjo
    • By hazyjo 5th Apr 19, 11:21 AM
    • 12,313 Posts
    • 16,821 Thanks
    hazyjo
    Original post was from last December.


    Expect a decision was made. Would be interesting to know if they walked or bought though I suppose...
    2019 wins: Bottle of Prosecco; Popcorn Shed popcorn; Moisturising 'M&S Time Capsules'; Case of Boost Sport + £30 Just Eat voucher; Battle Proms tickets and hotel; under-eye serum...
    • Car1980
    • By Car1980 5th Apr 19, 12:10 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 138 Thanks
    Car1980
    [QUOTE=hazyjo;75667934][SIZE=4]Original post was from last December.

    Yes, it is the most recent knotweed post.
    • MarionM
    • By MarionM 13th Apr 19, 8:45 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    MarionM
    Hi folks. We are about to buy a house where the owner said on the property form that there wasn’t J Knotweed present, but the next door property has it, and they have been treating it for a few years.The house we are buying is quite a long way from their boundary so we weren’t too worried .

    The neighbour has now told us the property we want does have it and he has seen the owner cutting JK and throwing it over the hedge into his property. He blames his JK invasion on our house owner.

    He says he is going to sue the new owner for damages of around £10,000.

    Our owner vacated the property several months ago and the neighbour probably doesn’t know where they have gone.

    Can the neighbour sue US for something that happened (if it’s true) before we bought the house? I wouldn’t have thought so.
    Last edited by MarionM; 13-04-2019 at 8:46 AM. Reason: Omission
    • Marvel1
    • By Marvel1 13th Apr 19, 9:49 AM
    • 4,406 Posts
    • 4,964 Thanks
    Marvel1
    Hi folks. We are about to buy a house where the owner said on the property form that there wasnít J Knotweed present, but the next door property has it, and they have been treating it for a few years.The house we are buying is quite a long way from their boundary so we werenít too worried .

    The neighbour has now told us the property we want does have it and he has seen the owner cutting JK and throwing it over the hedge into his property. He blames his JK invasion on our house owner.

    He says he is going to sue the new owner for damages of around £10,000.

    Our owner vacated the property several months ago and the neighbour probably doesnít know where they have gone.

    Can the neighbour sue US for something that happened (if itís true) before we bought the house? I wouldnít have thought so.
    Originally posted by MarionM
    Have you exchanged? If not walk away, couldn't be dealing with the hassle of it all.
    • Slinky
    • By Slinky 13th Apr 19, 10:16 AM
    • 6,240 Posts
    • 29,548 Thanks
    Slinky
    A question for your solicitor I would have thought.
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 13th Apr 19, 1:12 PM
    • 29,496 Posts
    • 102,316 Thanks
    Davesnave
    No, they can't sue you, and it's all bluster anyway, because to successfully sue one has to suffer a loss, and there's none.


    At least you know that the neighbour wants rid of it; it's the neighbours who don't care who can be a problem.


    Treating JK is a matter of understanding the life cycle and being conscientiously persistent. Anyone sensible can do it, but lenders usually require professional treatment backed by insurance. However, if the lender doesn't know....


    You've met the neighbour and we haven't. Question is, are they as daft as they sound? Never mind the knotweed, do you want to live next door, albeit at some distance?
    Opportunities may be missed, especially when they arrive disguised as hard work.

    • MarionM
    • By MarionM 13th Apr 19, 9:26 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    MarionM
    Yes I think it probably is all bluster. Maybe caught the neighbour on a bad day because he was ok before. My solicitor hasnít come across this scenario before but doesnít see how we can be liable for a previous owners (possible) wrongdoing.
    • markin
    • By markin 14th Apr 19, 4:42 PM
    • 846 Posts
    • 692 Thanks
    markin
    Yes I think it probably is all bluster. Maybe caught the neighbour on a bad day because he was ok before. My solicitor hasnít come across this scenario before but doesnít see how we can be liable for a previous owners (possible) wrongdoing.
    Originally posted by MarionM



    Sounds like it could all be a lie to me, Next he will be saying 'lets just settle it now for 10k' or to his no fee lawyer in a years time You have infected his garden!
    • GB01
    • By GB01 14th Jun 19, 2:02 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    GB01
    Can anyone direct me to the original post decision please? Can't seem to find it!

    We are in a similar situation, knotweed been found previously but seller had had a professional company in treating it since 2017 and paid for a 5 year guarantee to be in place (until 2023). Seller has agreed to upgrade to 10 year guarantee and pay for the guarantee to be put into our names.
    JK is present on neighbours property (apparently treating with weedkiller...) and neighbours backing onto THEM, not us. Seller has written to both offering the professional services who said they will deal with it at a reduced price but not had responses so we can assume nothing is truly being done, but i know its not illegal.
    I can't help but feel a little put out, as we weren't made aware until we received the conveyancing pack so our offer didn't take this into account, it was already 10% under asking - but I think that's just estate agents trying their luck with ridiculous asking prices. However, we are FTBs and are slowly understanding this is rarely a smooth process. I'm happy with the company she had in, they are frequently quoted on JK articles.
    Obviously i know this is a personal decision as it's our money but am i being naive in thinking all is ok?
    We are on a tight budget and can only get flats for the same price in the same area...but again that is not a reason to go ahead.
    Solicitor says 'it's London, knotweed is everywhere some people don't think its a big deal but others do'
    Surveyor says 'its a risk'
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