What to Consider When Selling or Buying an Underpinned Home

Properties that are underpinned are those that are experiencing subsidence or have previously subsided. It is actually possible to either sell or buy an underpinned house.

However, you should understand the key causes of the subsidence before selling or buying such a property. Here are the key tips to consider.

Subsidence is mainly caused by either physical problems beneath the property or problems that exist on the ground. The physical problems that may be beneath the property are issues like old mine shafts. Issues on the ground include shrinking of clay soil, leakages from the drain that causes the ground to be unstable, or roots that may grow under the foundation.

Subsidence problems that demand underpinning are quite serious. However, if the issue is solved, then it will no longer be a big issue. However, follow these tips when dealing with an underpinned home:

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What Was The Cause Of The Subsidence?

It is crucial to find out why the property subsided. This is necessary to find out whether the problem can be fixed permanently or it might be a recurring problem. Hire a professional surveyor or engineer to assess the cause and the remedies that were necessary to fix the problem.

Transfer of the Existing Insurance Policy of the Property

Another key consideration you should make is to establish whether the property’s insurance plan can be transferred and whether you can make claims in case the problem reoccurs. A property may have subsided and when selling or buying it, check with the insurer to find out whether the insurance plan is transferable. Always remember that if you are selling a home that requires underpinning, then the customers who will be interested may be few and you would have no other choice but to to sell it at a discounted price to get some offers.

Will A New Insurer Cover A House That Has Already Been Underpinned?

Many insurance companies tend to avoid covering properties with an underpinning history. However, you can still find a company that will cover the property after a survey is carried out to assess whether the problem was fixed properly.

Will A Mortgage Company Lend For A House That Has A History Of Underpinning?

Many mortgage lenders decline lending on a home that has ever subsided or was underpinned. Hence, you should ensure that you will be able to have the property insured against subsidence before approaching a lender. You may also opt for a lender who deals with non-standard type of mortgages. You can find such a lender by seeking assistance from a financial advisor.

How to Avoid Subsidence Problems in Future

Once the subsidence problem has been fixed, it will be crucial to ensure that the problem does not recur by eliminating the causes. For instance, remove shrubs or trees whose roots may damage the foundation, ensure the gutter is not leaking, drain any water instead of letting it soak into the foundation, and ensure that all the drains are not blocked.

The most important thing when dealing with a property that has a subsiding history is to know the cause, whether it is underpinned properly, and how you can avoid re-occurrence of the problem. If you have done this and you have a good insurance policy, then it will be stress free to buy or sell an underpinned property.

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