Pre-Purchase Damp and Timber Survey
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Why Hire Damp Surveyors Ltd to Complete the Pre-Purchase Damp and Timber Survey?Damp Surveyors Ltd are the leading damp surveying company in the UK. Our team have experience and expertise in spotting the smallest and hidden damp issues within the home that can affect the valuation of the property. As members of the Property Care Association, our team’s report will be accepted by mortgage companies without question. And our judgment on the valuation and the issues within the home is accepted by all mortgage lenders. We work tirelessly to ensure the valuation on your new property is accurate. And with a qualified and experienced team, you will know that the report is accurate and done quickly. So if you’re thinking about getting a pre-purchase damp and timber survey completed, then be sure to get in touch with us for our affordable and reasonable costs. Call us now on 0330 053 3432. Alternatively, use our online contact form and we can contact you back to arrange a survey when it is convenient for you.
What do Our Damp Surveyors Look For ?
Our damp and timber survey looks for signs of damp within the property. Numerous types of damp could be reported including damage to the damp proof course, rising damp, penetrating damp, and timber decay.
There are few damp-proofing companies that can match our expertise at finding problems (or potential problems) in homes. Therefore, when your damp and timber report is delivered, it will detail all the potential problems that are there in the home.
Part of the process, the pre-purchase damp survey is looking for high humidity around the home. Our surveyors use something called a moisture metre to look for where there is a lot of moisture around the property. They will look across the home, including for moisture on the ground floor, the interior walls, outside walls, and even in a chimney breast if possible.
We also look for signs of damp such as peeling wallpaper, paint coming off the walls, damage to the skirting board, and mould on the wall. Causes of any damage will be included in the report, which will also detail the potential fixes and treatments.
The surveyor will be as detailed as possible and can look at all kinds of elements inside the home.
What are Timber Surveyors Looking For?
It is important to also have a timber survey done on any potential property. These surveys are there to inspect for damages to the timber. Wet rot or dry rot can be seen on most timbers that are exposed in the home.
In addition, one of the problems that are often forgotten about, which a timber survey will try to find is woodworm. Woodworm is a burrowing insect that can infest damp wood in the home. These insects can cause structural damage.
They are also known to cause allergic reactions in some people, though it is rare for them to cause serious health problems.
The timber report should also report when there have been previous infestations. The timber report should detail whether the infestation is active or not. It might also make recommendations on what treatments or repairs will need to be made before the sale of the home.
How Long Does a Damp And Timber Survey Take?
We know that buying a house can be stressful, and you want to get moving. However, once you’ve booked a damp and timber survey with Damp Surveyors Ltd, we need to contact the current owners to arrange a time to come to the property. Sometimes, this can take a couple of weeks to organise so get in touch as soon as possible.
You will be notified when the survey is due to be done.
Once the survey has been completed, our surveyor will complete the report and send it to you, your mortgage company and your solicitor. The written report can take up to a week to complete. Therefore, it is advised you book your pre-purchase survey as soon as possible.
How Detailed is the Damp and Timber Report?
We aim to complete a very complex report. This report will have lots of details about the home, where the damp and timber issues are, what the causes are, and what needs to be done.
The detail within the damp and timber report can be very complex. So if you need help understanding any part of the report, you can speak to a member of our team. We can talk to you about the report and give you more information. It might help you decide as to whether you would like to go ahead and complete the purchase. This is all included free of charge as part of our service.
What Does a Damp and Timber Survey Cost?
The pre-purchase damp and timber survey cost can vary on the location of the home, the size of the property, and other elements.
You should expect the survey cost to be upwards of £200, if not more for larger properties.
Book Your Pre-Purchase Damp and Timber Survey
If you’re looking to book your pre-purchase damp and timber survey, it is best to do so early. You can book your survey by calling our team on 0330 053 3432. Alternatively, use our online contact form and we can contact you back to arrange a survey when it is convenient for you.
Here are some of the common FAQs that are asked about pre-purchase surveys.
What is a Pre-Purchase Damp and Timber Survey?
A pre-purchase damp and timber survey is a specialist damp and timber inspection that looks at the state of a property and looks for damp and timber problems in the home. It will also look at the damp proof course and check that all the materials are safe. The damp and timber report will become part of the analysis as to whether the mortgage provider will provide the mortgage on the business.
The damp survey must be carried out by a specialist damp surveyor. These are registered and will stick to nationally recognised criteria for the home. They will create a standardised damp and timber report that will be sent to both you, your solicitor, and the mortgage company.
What Happens if the Results Aren't as Good as You Expected?
There is always a risk that there is rising damp, penetrating damp, or other problems with your home. Whatever the damp and timber survey says, it does not mean that your home purchase is over. In fact, it might be a good omen for your purchase.
The first thing that you should do is to speak to the seller and share the results of the damp and timber survey. The mortgage provider might not wish to lend you the money as is, but they might be able to offer the money if corrections are made. The seller might want to do this before the purchase can go forward.
If this is the case, then another damp and timber report should be sought, to check that the work has been done to a satisfactory standard.
Another option is mortgage providers might be able to offer a lower amount. This lower amount might equate to the necessary costs to make right the damp problems within the property. The mortgage provider might make this a condition of the mortgage and you might be able to make a lower offer on the property accepted.
Why Would a Seller Accept a Lower Offer?
One of the most common questions that is asked about buying a home is why would a seller accept a lower offer because of the results of the damp and timber report. The fact is that whatever we find is also going to be found by a new purchaser, which can be tough to find, especially in difficult markets.
Therefore, to buy their next property, they are more likely to accept a lower offer, especially if you show good skill at displaying you are reducing the price based on the estimates to repair the damage.
There is sometimes the case that the seller will not budge. They might make the decision not to sell. However, they might also request that the offer stands and they will make the repairs that have been detailed in the pre-purchase damp and timber survey.
There is always a third option that both the seller and you make a compromise where they will reduce the price slightly and make some adjustments to the home. At the same time, you will make some of the smaller changes to the home.
One example might be stopping the damp issues, but not replacing the decorations like wallpaper, paint, skirting board replacement, or even new flooring. However, it is important that if there is damage to the floor timbers, these should be replaced before the house purchase is complete.
Even if this is the case, it might be necessary to get a second damp and timber report completed.
What Repairs Might Need to be Done?
The pre-purchase damp and timber report might highlight several common damp problems within the home. This might include rising damp, penetrating damp, wet rot, dry rot, and other timber damage.
The timber survey can be very detailed in exactly what might need to be done. For instance, the report might suggest that the damp proof course will need to be repaired. Or it might suggest that the timbers need to be replaced.
The damp and timber report might not suggest some of the simpler aspects that can help reduce dampness within the property. For instance, you might want to add some ventilation to the property.
Who Do the Damp and Timber Specialists Work For?
There is sometimes confusion about who the damp and timber specialists work for. While they are delivering a report to the mortgage company, and they also talk to the home sellers, you purchase the damp and timber report. Therefore, you are our customer. We work for you.
We have limited contact with the sellers and only speak to them about arranging a time to complete the survey. We will not pass on the damp survey to the seller of the property.
If you would like to share the report with the seller, you may do so. However, it isn't always a good idea. They might use the report to undermine future negotiations.
Can I get a Free Survey for My New Home?
Some companies will offer you a free damp and timber survey. These companies are often using a tactic to get a foot through the door of a potential customer. These damp course surveyors tend to lack training or the equipment to correctly diagnose the issues that are affecting a home if they can identify issues with the property.
Mortgage providers will tend not to accept these surveys as part of the process of purchasing a home. Therefore, the buyer will need to purchase another damp and timber report for the new home.
If you do not need a mortgage and are relying on this survey, you should not take their guarantees. Typically, the report tends to be little more than a page of text.
Do I Get a Discount If I Get Another Damp and Timber Report?
If you've already had a damp and timber report on your property, and it brought up some problems, then you will need to negotiate on the next steps. If the seller has been determined to carry on with the sale and has offered to put right what was highlighted, then you might be able to carry on with the sale.
The problem with this is that you then have to find out if the changes have been made. Therefore, you will need another damp and timber survey completed.
The second survey will be the same price as the first survey. They will look at everything, even items that have been looked at and passed.
The reason for this is that pre-purchase damp and timber survey needs to be accurate. Between the first and second reports, significant changes could have been made to the house. For instance, while repairing damp walls, damage might have been caused to other parts of the home. Therefore, you will need to have everything re-assessed.
While some people might expect that there is a discount on the damp and timber report cost, this is not the case. The new timber report is counted as a fresh report. So the pre-purchase damp and timber survey cost will be the same.
Do I Need a Damp and Timber Report If I Don't Need a Mortgage?
If you don't need a mortgage but are making a purchase of a house, then you might not want to have the cost of a survey. However, it is highly recommended that you still get a damp and timber report completed on the property you would like to purchase.
A good company will be able to create a damp and timber report that would warn you of potential problems that you might have with the new property.
Not having a damp and timber report completed puts you at risk of buying a home that has several problems with it. These problems could cause you to spend lots of money fixing them, costs that you might not have expected and budgeted for.
If the report does come back with a problem, it also gives you the leverage to lower your offer or to request that changes be made to the home before you purchase.
Can I Still Purchase the Home After a Disappointing Damp and Timber Report?
If you don't need a mortgage, then you might still want to make the purchase. However, you should try to get some money off the purchase or attempt to get the current owners (the seller) to reduce the cost of the property to allow you the funds to make the house right.
However, it is important to remember that there is a legal reason for you to complete the purchase of your home while you haven't exchanged contracts yet. That said, you might feel obligated, but this isn't the case and you shouldn't make a purchase based on a verbal agreement, especially if the seller hasn't disclosed damp issues with the house, which they may or may not know.
What Does it Mean if High Humidity is Found on Ground Floor Meter Readings
A common problem for home-buyers is that they have a damp report and there is a record of high moisture on the ground floor. The buyer will often think that this will reduce the chances of them getting a mortgage or they might worry that the pre-purchase damp report is a reason for them to not purchase the home.
However, it is important to realise that it might not be because of a damaged damp-proof course or penetrating damp in the home. Most homes that were built after 1875 will have a physical damp-proof course in the home.
Even if a property does not have any damp proof course in place, there are alternative and more cost-effective treatments for damp. These are often environmentally friendly, chemical-free, and more.
The problem might be caused because of poor ground floor ventilation. Or it could be that the gutters have become blocked and just need cleaning. Another problem that might be there is if the home has been empty for a long period and there has been no heating on. If a house has been left unoccupied, then it will usually allow for condensation.
Other alternatives to resolve the dampness in a home include adding extra air bricks to the home or reducing raised ground levels.
Can I carry out a pre-purchase damp survey before I make an offer?
It is possible that you can carry out any surveys that you want before you make an offer. However, that is something that you must discuss between you and the seller. Sometimes the seller might want this as it provides some commitment. Others might not wait and allow other potential buyers to look at the property.