Buying a property is one of the biggest investments you are likely to make so it’s well worth it to order a pre-purchase survey to check for defects and problems before you seal the deal. In case you need convincing on this point, here’s why you need a survey:
1. It’s ‘buyer beware’ when buying property. Generally, “caveat emptor” is the contract law principle that controls the sale of real property after the date of closing. Under the principle of “caveat emptor”, the buyer cannot recover damages from the seller for defects on the property that rendered the property unfit for ordinary purposes. The only exception is if the seller actively concealed latent defects or otherwise made material misrepresentations amounting to fraud.
2. A pre-purchase survey – which should be carried out by a suitably qualified person who is independent and impartial – can identify key issues such as:
• Whether the building is constructed with defective concrete blocks.
• Pyrite issues in the floor or blockwork structure.
• Rising damp or water ingress.
• Suitability of on-site sewerage treatment systems.
3. Identifying the key issues in advance will help you decide on:
• Whether to withdraw from the purchase e.g. in one survey, we identified suspected defective concrete blocks and our client was able to decide to withdraw from the purchase.
• Using the cost of carrying out the remedial work to re-negotiate the purchase price.
• Getting the Vendor or Property Developer to carry out the necessary remedial work and provide the necessary certification. For example, in another of our cases, a sewerage treatment system wasn’t operating nor was it in the correct place as per the planning permission. We helped our client negotiate with the Vendor to carry out the required work.
4. Establish and confirm the scope of the survey in advance with your Surveyor, with a clear & detailed description of what it does and doesn’t cover. It is worth noting that some surveyors limit their survey to the Structural condition of the property only. At HD McKay Consulting Engineers, we take a holistic approach and review not only the building structure but also the opinion on:
• Compliance with planning permission or Building Regulations.
• Accuracy of site boundaries and identify any wayleaves or rights of way on the Folio Plans.
For further information or to request a pre-purchase survey, please call us on +353 74 9129243 or email firstname.lastname@example.org