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Buyer pulled out because of "damp" - gutted and hacked off with her and the surveyor

(28 Posts)
onlyaname Mon 19-Sep-11 20:12:02

buyer has pulled out 5 weeks after survey was done. Apparently the house has major damp problems, inside and out. we haven't seen the survey but it also says that the valuation is correct , the Surveyor told us this. How can the valuation be correct if there is such an issue with dampness????

A dampness surveyor came round and found one small area of damp which would cost about 375 to put right. She recons this won't deal with cause of the damp. We have no idea what the cause could be, nor could the damp proofing guy. We have never noticed any damp issues at all.

Now don't know whether to keep house on Market or give up for time being and see how things go. We really need to get a good price for house. We are a good 10 to 20 grand below most of the other asking prices for similar properties, but DH reckons that it's pointless trying to sell before Christmas.

I bloody hate moving house.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 19-Sep-11 20:18:05

Can you go back to the estate agent and tell them what your damp surveyor says? They could go to the buyer and tell them that and maybe reassure them?

I can understand being put off if one surveyor is saying there is a major damp problem.

AurraSing Mon 19-Sep-11 20:25:55

Why don't you get the damp sorted out? If you don't, it's going to be an issue with every potential buyer.

onlyaname Mon 19-Sep-11 20:33:39

EA has gone back to her and explained everything and she has had quote from damp proofing guy. Her solicitor has also talked through the survey with her too because she initially panicked three weeks back because the survey said the house might contain asbestos cos' it was built before a certain year, it was built in 1901!

She just won't listen to the EA. We offered to give her the money for the work but she just keeps saying the cause of the damp is still there... Even tho the damp proofing guy said there are no issues with water at the back of the house. EA thinks she was never that interested in buying. I find that very odd.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 19-Sep-11 20:42:26

I looked at a house once and put an offer in, survey came back saying that 12k worth of work needed doing. I pulled out. Vendor went nuts and offered to get all the work done. I still wasn't interested as I was scared what else might turn up.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 19-Sep-11 20:46:20

If your house is built in 1901 she's been unrealistic if she thinks a survey isn't going to find something.
Our house is also a 1901 house and our survey said something about damp in the built in wardrobes. It's not rising damp but condensation damp caused by no cavity wall. Dh says it's to do with cold external Walls and then the warm air hits the Walls and you get damp. It was very bad when we moved in, we sorted it by lining the wardrobes and we never shut the doors now to let the air circulate. Is your damp something similar? Maybe she doesn't understand the difference between this and scary rising damp.

onlyaname Mon 19-Sep-11 20:49:52

Well 12k's worth of work would put me off. A few hundred pounds would not.

I guess it's her prerogative.

onlyaname Mon 19-Sep-11 20:54:43

Yes I think she has panicked at the word damp. I don't think it is rising damp probably penetrating damp. Our house shows no signs of damp - condensation or damp walls etc. Etc. Because of that we are thinking of getting an independent survey where they do more than stick an electronic Damp meter in the wall

Sidge Mon 19-Sep-11 21:08:32

I think some people want a house in move-in condition needing no work or maintenance.

We had a couple buying our last house that pulled out after survey because it showed the chimneystack needed repointing at a cost of about 300 pounds. We offered to get it done ourselves, or knock a few hundred quid off but they wouldn't proceed. It then turned out she was scared of the work an older house might need doing - I suggested to the EA that he feed back to her then that they didn't go viewing and offering on 1930s semis but maybe look at a newbuild hmm

JillySnooper Mon 19-Sep-11 21:12:06

Is she a FTB?

Indaba Mon 19-Sep-11 21:25:46

sorry for being thick but what is FTB?

daenerysstormborn Mon 19-Sep-11 21:27:05

ftb - first time buyer

nocake Mon 19-Sep-11 21:43:05

Some people get scared off by the tiniest thing in a survey, not realising that every house has faults and no survey is 100% perfect. Unfortunately there's nothing you can do to persuade that sort of person. Get it back on the market ASAP.

FootballFriendSays Mon 19-Sep-11 22:19:30

I'd get it back on the market and sort out the damp meanwhile too. It will turn up in another survey, after all they are meant to check out for 'faults'. Good luck.

JoJoMummy321 Mon 19-Sep-11 23:05:21

I would be cross too especially after 5 weeks of having the survey. Once we were moving from a new build house and looked at a very old conversion. The survey was slightly concerning re the damp and we pulled out but didn't keep them waiting for 5 weeks. Basically we both knew the house was really too expensive for us and I suppose we were worried as we wouldn't have had any money to fix problems. Also I think back then having been used to new build we were quite naive about old houses. Now we are more used to it and wouldn't be put off. I wonder if your buyer is buying at their limit and not really used to old property.

Is there any way you can get a specialist to say what's causing it and what needs to be done as a proper long term solution? Even offer 2k more off price that buyer could keep as an emergency fund for house upkeep?

myron Tue 20-Sep-11 01:35:35

You need to either 'fix' it or declare it to any serious buyers so that it's not a nasty surprise when it shows up in a survey which it will. Buyers will either shy away (can't do anything about that) or want to renegotiate on price (fair enough) so be prepared. We had an extremely 'bad' structural survey on a period property which we hoped to purchased which was severe enough to impact the mortgage valuation (which valued it under the agreed price by double figures plus a conditional mortgage offer with a retention figure of the same amount until remedial work was effected). An independent specialist report put remedial work (new CH pipework, boiler, timber treatment, specialist plastering at a starting point of £20K+ AND said that the current dampness would take years to dry out if ever. Obviously, this rained on our parade big time and added to our other doubts. Nevertheless, we tried to renegotiate the price. The buyers didn't budge an inch and put the house back on the market straightaway. It's still on the market a few months later.

JillySnooper Tue 20-Sep-11 07:47:36

You may hopefully find a more experienced buyer comes along. I always hated dealing with FTB as they just don't have that experience and shy at the slightest things!

onlyaname Tue 20-Sep-11 08:29:08

Thanks for responses. House is back on Market. Hoping for another sale so we can continue with our purchase.

Yes a FTB - who should clearly be looking at new build flats a few floors up.

I'm still not convinced that there is any significant damp problem - surely there would be obvious signs. Been doing some research and will be getting in a surveyor who has a better understanding of damp and is not trying to flog damp proofing.

onlyaname Tue 20-Sep-11 12:04:40

We requested a copy of the survey but the ex-buyer has refused to send a copy to us or the EA. Is there anything we can do to see it? Will the surveyors allow us a look? I'm guessing not.

JoJoMummy321 Tue 20-Sep-11 13:18:15

How strange that she won't share the survey findings with you. Does that not make you think that the damp problem is nowhere near as bad as she has made it out to be?

I would be thinking she's using something small and insignificant as a reason to pull out. Perhaps she got cold feet about buying an older property.

How annoying for you though. Are you in an area where you are likely to find another buyer fairly fast? If I was you I would get in a specialist to give you a full report on any damp issues and a breakdown of costs for any work they recommend. They you are fully armed for the next person in case they also complain about damp. It's more than likely that the surveyor has found a high damp reading in one of your walls but that could be something as simple as condensation causing that!!

RoxyRobin Tue 20-Sep-11 13:51:11

I have a vague memory that you sign an undertaking not to share the surveyor's report with a third party. Not that it would stop people doing so if they thought it was something to be gained by doing so!

onlyaname Tue 20-Sep-11 14:17:06

She has actually given the report to the EA now but said they can't show it to us. Which seems a bit odd.

EA is pretty confident they can get another sale.

JillySnooper Tue 20-Sep-11 14:24:09

The EA works for you not the buyer.
I would be back on to them sharpish.

onlyaname Tue 20-Sep-11 14:33:44

Good point. I will.

Pendeen Thu 22-Sep-11 17:59:54

Re the survey the surveyors' liability will be limitd to their client. It is vey rare for a surveyor to agree to anyone other than the client being allowed to use the suvrey.

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