Do I need to have searches carried out?

20th January 2020

Do I need to have searches carried out?

A question that is often asked by clients is “do I really need to pay out for searches? I want to keep the costs down – I know the area and I live locally.”

By carrying out searches you will find out if there are any issues which might affect your future enjoyment of the property. You would not want a nasty surprise after you have purchased your dream home. It is a big investment after all. Is it worth the risk of being left with something that could cost you thousands to put right?

If you are a cash buyer you can choose as many or few searches as you like and your conveyancer can recommend which ones are a “must” due to the age of the property or the area you are moving to.

If you are buying with the assistance of a mortgage, your lender will tell your conveyancer which searches they want ordered and checked before they will release your mortgage funds. The lender is also investing in the property and they want to be sure that there are no issues which will affect the value of the property and if they ever needed to re-possess the property they can sell it and recover the loan. Caveat emptor or buyer beware is a rule that stands and you need to find out as much as you can about a property before you buy it.

Your survey will reveal any repairs or maintenance that is required but the searches will reveal things like:

  • Planning permission granted or refused.
  • Has the property ever flooded?
  • Does the property have all necessary building regulations for alterations or for example, a new gas boiler?
  • Are there Competent Persons Certificates for installations of new electric or gas?
  • You can find out about crime rates and facilities in the area and whether the land has been contaminated.
  • Public footpaths crossing the property
  • Listed buildings or living in a conservation area.
  • If the property is connected to mains drainage.

The list is not exhaustive and your conveyancer is best placed to advise you which searches we would recommend or are required by your Lender if you are getting mortgage finance.

For a discussion or quote for buying your new home, contact us on 01473 211121 or email [email protected].

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