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Thinking of buying a house previously flooded, but now has full defences ?

(12 Posts)
mrswadey Tue 20-Oct-15 10:07:24

Hi -
Any help / opinions wanted please x...
We've found a dream house for hopefully the next 20-25 years. It's in a great location and superbly maintained.

It was flooded in 2007. However the owner at high expense erected a six foot floodwall guarding the property. In essence, if a terrible flood such as the one in 2007 occurs again, it should be fine. If it's high, then it won't.

It's been in the market for 3 years. Insurance is possible but £850p.a.

It's an ideal home, seems measures have been made to protect it, plus the local council have put in better flood measures (pumping station for the village)...

Some people will just walk away knowing it was flooded once. Any advice ?

Salene Tue 20-Oct-15 10:09:40

And what happened if you'd if need to sell it , it's been on market for 3 years which I would assume no one is interested due to previous floods

I wouldn't want to own a home I couldn't sell as you never know what can happen in the future and it would be a serious chain around your neck

mrswadey Tue 20-Oct-15 10:20:40

Yes, that is a very good point Salene

I suppose we're thinking that in 25 years we "may" not have been flooded since, so potentially if we've not been flooded since 2007 - so a possible buyer may be comforted in 30 years of no flooding when we came to sell :-)

Of course that's not a guarantee ! It's clear to me that the house isn't selling due to the flooding occurrence some 8 years ago. A cheeky offer may secure it, but is it worth it !

Pootles2010 Tue 20-Oct-15 10:25:41

If it's been on the market for 3 years, there is a serious problem. Either the surveys are coming back with problems, or it's uninsurable, or no one will agree to a mortgage for it.

You don't know if the defenses are any good, they haven't been tested.

Bakeoffcake Tue 20-Oct-15 10:43:55

The village next to us was flooded about 12 years ago. I've noticed that houses do take longer to sell, but they always do in the end and their prices don't seem to be affected very much.

Friends of ours wanted to buy a lovely cottage which was flooded. In the end they pulled out because the sellers were being very cagey about providing guarantees for the work which had been done at the time of flooding-damp proofing etc. However the cottage has since sold.

So if your interested I'd want all the info/guarantees upfront so you know they've actually got it all.

I'd also say that the insurance sounds quite cheap to me, we live in a thatched house and our insurance is much more.

mrswadey Tue 20-Oct-15 10:48:09

Thanks Pootles2010.

Totally agree. It's just a shame it's an ideal home.

The floods really were a "one-off", and defences are in place (but not tested) and the flooding in 2007 was exacerbated by a strategic decision to further (deliberately) flood that area, to save a huge waterway nearby from bursting and causing even more devastation to a very populated area

In the end, you're right, it isn't selling as mortgages may be tough, though insurance is possible.

Bakeoffcake Tue 20-Oct-15 11:02:46

excuse my typos!

Pootles2010 Tue 20-Oct-15 11:09:51

I know, we're in Yorkshire and I know plenty who were flooded in 2007, being nowhere near a river. Unfortunately it sounds like you are near a big river, so not out of the question it might happen again.

Don't suppose you know any of the neighbours you could have a chat with about it? They might know a bit more.

iMatter Tue 20-Oct-15 11:14:56

I would speak to your insurers and mortgage company.

If either of those say no the it's pretty pointless perusing it.

mrswadey Tue 20-Oct-15 11:44:08

Bakeoffcake - Thanks - Yes, flood houses do eventually sell (at the right price), all it takes is a willing buyer, but I suspect selling the property on will still take years....

Pootles2010, ta. I did speak to a resident who said the flooding wasn't that bad, until the council/Environmental Agency made a decision to change the pumping, and then the village got hit further !

iMatter - Very good point, I'll call my mortgage provider - Some have a blanket response of "if it's been flooded, we wont mortgage".

neepsandtatties Tue 20-Oct-15 12:16:51

A few thoughts - the already mentioned "the day you buy is the day you sell" (i.e. if it is concerning you, then it is likely to concern future buyers). While you say you plan to live there 25/30 years, what if you have to sell sooner and faster (divorce, bereavement, redundancy)?

I agree with Pootles that the fact it has been on market for 3 years suggests something more serious is going on (insurance/mortgage/valuation-wise) than just people being put off by the possibility of flooding.

My friend lives in a house that hasn't quite flooded, but nearly has (water lapping up to the front door). Every time it rains for a prolonged period she feels sick. First thing she does in the morning on waking is look out of the window to see whether the water is rising. Out walking, she is scanning the culverts and drains to see if they are getting higher. She gets a tightness in her stomach every time she hears on the forecast that we're in for a rainy period. Only you know if you and your DH are the type to become obsessed about this type of thing or not.

mrswadey Tue 20-Oct-15 17:26:23

Thanks neepsandtatties.

I can get insurance, and a small mortgage should not present a problem.
The defences, albeit untested is basically a solid 5-6 foot brick wall surrounding the property. Given the freak conditions in 2007 was 5-6 feet I'm "comforted" that if something like that happened again, damage would be much more mitigated with this and the other council defences.

But as you say, it's a risk. Dream Home for maybe 20+ years, then a few years trying to sell and maybe selling at a much much reduced value - But taking into account the property has probably risen somewhat in value anyway to compensate, plus we'd be looking to downsize at that point.

Decisions !!!!

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