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Survey issues - who pays

(27 Posts)
Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 12:53:54

Specialist survey done on house hoping to buy has shown up £3k min of work that needs doing (damp). Do I now go back and lower my offer to allow for this? Ask them to do the work? The buyer before me pulled out, I expect for this same reason so I can't see anybody buying it without it being done.

In an ideal world I would like it done before moving in (spraying, replastering etc) and house is currently empty. But where would I stand if I funded the work and they then pulled out before exchange?

superking Sun 12-Nov-17 12:59:37

If that's the only major issue that the survey has thrown up then I'd be inclined to just suck it up to be honest, although you could always try your luck and try to negotiate a reduction/ getting the buyer to do the work. Depends how strong your position is - do you really want the house? Does the seller really need to sell?

We're currently selling our house and in that situation I would absolutely not budge. Ours is a period house and so some level of maintenance/ sorting out problems is always required. Unless it was a very major or costly problem then I would not drop the price.

BasinHaircut Sun 12-Nov-17 13:08:18

IME surveys always show damp whether it’s really there or not, so it depends on a few things.

Firstly the detail of what needs to be done, secondly the price and overall condition of the house (is it a fixer upper?), and thirdly how the market lies in your area and how much you want the house.

When I sold my last house they tired to get us to ‘go halves’ on a new roof as the old one wasn’t lined, not how they do it these days etc. But it wasn’t damaged/leaking/llegal etc so I just pointed out that they were buying my house as seen, and if they wanted to make improvements then they could do so at their own expense.

When I bought my current house, it did have a damp related issue but we bought it knowing we needed to spend appx £20k on it anyway so we took it as part and parcel of that.

Angryosaurus Sun 12-Nov-17 13:17:23

There was some damp reported on the Victorian house we are buying. Not unexpected although we hadn't noticed any problems on our 2 viewings. We will deal with it after we've moved in as we love the house.

Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 16:04:36

The original survey flagged an issue so this is with a specialist company that the EA recommended. The damp is pretty bad and has led to an infestation of death watch beetle. It would clearly have been like this for some time. So presumably showed up on their survey when they bought it 18 months ago.

Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 16:05:22

In theory the house is sold as all done and the price reflected that.

OliviaBenson Sun 12-Nov-17 16:11:50

Was it a company that also sell damp proof treatments and insect treatments by any chance?

Did you not notice the damp? What type of damp is it? Rising damp is actually very rare.

How old is the house? If its 100yrs plus I'd be very wary about these modern treatments.

An independent damp surveyor would be the best way forward. One that doesn't have a product to sell.

AnaWinter Sun 12-Nov-17 16:14:05

The buyer pays. 3k is not much in the scheme of things.

Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 16:15:38

It is the independent damp surveyor that the estate agents selling the house told me to use. No I didn't notice the damp, didn't notice the insects either although both surveyors have.

Yes it's an older house. So I expected some issues, but not to the extent of replastering the front interior of the house.

Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 16:17:16

Actually 3k is quite a lot in my opinion to sort an issue that they must have known about as they moved in so recently. If they had lived there 10 years plus I would think differently.

JungleBooty Sun 12-Nov-17 16:19:29

You could reduce the offer price by £3k to account for the cost of work involved, however the mortgage lender may still not lend until the work is done. Some lenders will allow a retention - essentially hold some money back, allow you to complete on the purchase then lend the rest once they've inspected the damp work or have sufficient evidence the work has been completed.

You could threaten to pull out of the purchase unless the vendors do the work to the property.

Somerville Sun 12-Nov-17 16:26:32

What's the value of the house? 3k doesn't seem worth losing the sale over. The surveys and legal work that you've commited to so far might be a substantial portion of that?

ScrubbyGarden Sun 12-Nov-17 17:31:42

If you end up paying- since the house is empty you could probably negotiate to have the work done between exchange and completion, which will save a lot of hassle. Your solicitor will need to draw up some paperwork, but it’s totally possible and really really helps.

Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 17:37:25

Right okay, it can be done between E and C. That does help.

I think this has just made me wonder what else may be an issue that I had assumed they would have sorted when they did work on the house. I need to go back and get some more bits checked I think.

Bubblebubblepop Sun 12-Nov-17 17:39:45

If you pay surely you just get it done after you buy it?

You can ask to reduce the offer by £3k. People usually ask for something when the survey comes back. The vendor usually says no.

Bubblebubblepop Sun 12-Nov-17 17:40:43

You can never assume anything on a house. damp isn't a big deal and surveys almost always bring back something

Maria1982 Sun 12-Nov-17 17:45:17

I would go back and reduce my offer by the £3k. You say their previous buyer backer out, so you should be in a reasonable negotiating position.
They may say no, yes, or offer to split h difference.

For what it's worth when we sold an old flat, we had three offers, accepted the highest offer. They then came back to us asking for a price reduction after survey said something in the roof needed fixing. We didn't think there was anything wrong with the roof, but we split the difference between their original price and reduced price in order to keep the sale as it was £1k and we didn't want to have to go back to doing viewings.

Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 17:45:30

I don't particularly want to be living in it when they are treating it for the insect infestation and stripping whole walls of plaster tbh. Not with children and pets. Far easier for it to be done whilst it's unoccupied surely?

Yes I shouldn't have assumed it would be okay. But I presumed when cosmetic stuff had been done (new bathrooms etc) that the important bits might have been too!

Bubblebubblepop Sun 12-Nov-17 17:46:05

Blimey Maria. I wouldn't pay in a million years for a property I was about to leave.

Ttbb Sun 12-Nov-17 17:46:55

I would suggest doing the work yourself. Sometimes damp can be a recurring problem do you would want to know.

Maria1982 Sun 12-Nov-17 17:47:20

Oh and - I wouldn't assume anything about a house. In fact I was told by someone older and wiser to always assume more things will be wrong with a house than one has noticed. And they were right. Sorry to sound negative, just trying to inject some caution... house buying is stressful. Allowing yourself some contingency in budget gives you breathing space if something extra needs fixing once you've moved

Strawberryshortcake40 Sun 12-Nov-17 17:48:29

Yes I will suggest that to them. Tbh it's up to them, the house has been up for sale for 6 months and I'm sold to a cash buyer and waiting to move. I really like the house but I'm beginning to think they either have lied about it all being fine, or didn't get a decent survey done themselves. In which case there could be lots wrong.

Maria1982 Sun 12-Nov-17 17:48:37

We don't think as we paid for it, we just sold it for slightly less than they'd originally offered. It was still more than others had offered, and above our asking price. I still consider we won all around.

Maria1982 Sun 12-Nov-17 17:50:29

Don't assume that because cosmetic stuff has been done, structural stuff has also been done!
That's a classic DIY nightmare scenario. It's easier for people to do th cosmetic stuff!

Bubblebubblepop Sun 12-Nov-17 17:51:47

Oh yes that would be far less painful!

Fwiw my last house my bank told me I needed to get an air brick installed. I called and asked them HTF they expected me to install an airbrick in a house I didn't own, and wtf should I, more to the point. They agreed immediately it was a stupid idea and said just do it as soon as you move in please.... ha. More fool them... I never did itgrin

If they've done up the house to sell they will just have done the cheap cosmetic stuff.

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