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Are many houses in the UK going to collapse soon?

(9 Posts)
fritillery Sat 21-Jan-17 12:56:36

I've heard from a few different sources that the big housebuilders, who put up most of the modern estates, build houses on the cheap. Apparently those houses can only be expected to last a few decades. They are not built to last. I asked a local builder about this, and he said that many houses are basically built out of wood, that sooner or later water gets in and the house starts to rot, it becomes too difficult and expensive to maintain it, and at some point it will collapse. He said that modern new builds are only designed to last approx 50 years.
So what does this mean in practice? If I buy a "cheap" estate house that was built in the 1980s, should I expect to have to have it pulled down and replaced in 20 years' time? Having spent £250,000 on it? Why do these short life houses remain so expensive to buy?

Applesauce29 Sat 21-Jan-17 13:35:23

I've never heard this. After living in numerous new builds (houses and flats), I can say that quality varies greatly, but to some extent you get what you pay for. No house is going to last forever, without maintenance every few years.

EagleIsland Sat 21-Jan-17 13:46:47

It is true to an extent. They can last longer if the homeowner is proactive with annual maintenance.

The housing market price is largely driven by lack of stock. So builders can build lots of small low quality houses and make a lot of money quickly.

AppleAndBlackberry Sat 21-Jan-17 13:51:20

I don't think this is true at all, most houses are still made of concrete blocks and bricks which should stand for centuries. I've been in three new build properties recently and they're essentially made out of the same materials as my 1970s house.

Spam88 Sat 21-Jan-17 13:58:57

Our new build is made of breeze block and brick.

GrouchyKiwi Sat 21-Jan-17 14:10:56

I live on a new build development and can see the new houses going up around the site. As Apple says, they're built with concrete and bricks.

Timeforabiscuit Sat 21-Jan-17 14:17:47

Id be more concerned about houses that were a non standard build rather than a new build as such.

I think each generation of houses has its issues, whether its the damp course going in a victorian house or collapsing lintels in a 1930s semi.

GreenREM Sat 21-Jan-17 14:26:43

We had a local experienced roofer come and check our roof out and he said the older houses in the town (around 100years) have roofs which last longer than the new builds have gone up.
Not sure if that's true but he seemed to think it was.
I can't comment on the quality of the build, but in my small sample of 3 houses built in the 90's and the one I'm in now which is 90years, the one I'm in now has had much less issues with damp and the roof. It also feels a more sturdy house- the walls are thicker so we can't hear out semi neighbours or the road. the internal walls are solid and the rooms are larger with higher ceilings and more storage space and a much bigger plot.
For the cash the older house wins for us in every way, compared to what the same money would get in a new build. I appreciate we may have just struck lucky with a well maintained old house. Because it's older we half expect issues to crop up so have some savings put aside in case.

PigletJohn Sat 21-Jan-17 15:01:01

I thought (I have no statistics) that the fashion for timber-framed houses had died down.

There are some system-built houses (usually imported from Germany as panels) which are considered high quality.

A lot of Victorian houses were built to very poor standards. Many of them have fallen down (mostly in the war when a bomb fell nearby and whole terraces sometimes collapsed).

Modern Building Regulations enforce much better foundations now.

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