What Problems you Might Face when Buying a Property?

Published - 10 August 2023, Thursday
  • Buying a Home

There are many things that can go wrong when buying a property, and unfortunately, some of these issues can cause stress, delay and even legal action. As well as this, it can be very disappointing to discover something is wrong with your new property after all the hard work you put in to get to that stage.

Here you will find out the most common problems that occur when purchasing a house and how to deal with them.

Damp problems

If the building is old, there is a chance that there could be damp patches or mould throughout the interior or exterior of the property. This could be caused by many different issues such as leaking pipes, poor ventilation or defective guttering. If any of these cause dampness in your home, they will need to be fixed immediately to prevent any further damage being caused.

Electrics and plumbing

There is a lot of wiring and plumbing in your home, which can easily become damaged over time. The last thing you want after moving in is discovering that there are issues with the electrics or plumbing but this can be hard to spot until you move in. However, when purchasing any property, it is always a good idea to get a house survey done by a professional so they can pick up any potential problems. You may also want to do your own research on what to look for when surveying a home, so if anything does majorly go wrong after you have moved in, you can hopefully pick it up before it becomes too serious.

Survey issues

Another common problem that people face when buying a house is survey issues. These can be anything from damp problems to structural damage or even subsidence problems but they can all lead to huge costs and months of work being carried out before you can move into your new home. The problem with survey issues is that there is always a chance that you may not spot them until after you have exchanged contracts and completed, leaving you stuck with a huge bill for repairs.

Unpaid council tax

It is important to remember that the seller has to pay all outstanding council tax up until the day before completion. You should always ask if there is an unpaid amount and if possible, see the evidence from the seller. If there is an outstanding amount, then it will be passed on to you as the new owner so make sure you find out before you complete.

Legal issues

The most common problem that many people can face when buying a house is the fact that the seller has not disclosed information about the property. This can be a legal problem and if it’s discovered after you have moved in, it can cost you thousands of pounds to fix. It’s important that you ask as many questions as you can and make sure that you thoroughly read through all of the documents before exchanging contracts. When buying a house, it is best to have property solicitors by your side to help you get along.

Conveyancing problems

A common problem that occurs when purchasing a house is conveyancing issues. A lot of buyers are not aware of what this process actually involves and will not be aware of the work that goes on behind the scenes until it’s too late. Conveyancing is the legal process involved when purchasing a property, from submitting an offer to completing the sale. It involves many different steps, including getting local searches to find out if there are any issues in the local area, checking planning permission and making sure that the seller is the registered owner of the property. Many buyers do not realise how important this process is and how long it can take, leading to them giving up their purchase or losing out on their dream home because they didn’t think about it in time.

What if the property is worth less than agreed?

The next most common issue is the property is actually worth less than the price that you have agreed upon. This usually happens because of a bad survey but it can also be something to do with the market value or location. When this happens, there’s not much that you can do unless your mortgage company agrees to change your loan based on the new valuation. If this happens, it’s best to try and negotiate with your lender or even change lenders if necessary.

Failure to exchange contracts

If you do not exchange contracts with the seller, then this means that you will not be able to buy the house and legally own it. Without exchanging contracts, there is no legal agreement in place so if something were to go wrong, either you or the seller could pull out of the sale at any time and for any reason. The contract also outlines how much money each party owes and what date this money is due to be paid. When exchanging contracts, both parties will sign a contract agreeing to the terms of sale, which will be legally binding. Watch these things and be careful when choosing a home!

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