How Does Japanese Knotweed Affect House Buying?
There have been several reports in the media about how Japanese knotweed reduces the value of your house. Indeed, thanks to the structural damage that Japanese knotweed is capable of, the value of an affected property can decrease.
A buyer wishing to purchase a house or building with knotweed could well find mortgage lenders reluctant to offer finance. To overcome this, a full specialist treatment plan for Japanese knotweed removal is usually required, along with an insurance-backed guarantee that the problem is being dealt with efficiently. The idea is to completely safeguard the home against Japanese knotweed for a good number of years. The conveyancing stage then guarantees potential legal action to the seller won’t happen later on.
Any UK property seller will be asked to list Japanese knotweed in a specific form known as the TA6 property information form. The TA6 form offers some security for the buyer, in that if a seller doesn’t declare Japanese knotweed, and it’s later found to have a detrimental effect on the house, they can potentially be taken through a legal case for misrepresentation on sale. A TA6 property form gives confidence and assurance to the prospective buyer. New builds also include a homebuyer report to flag any issues that need urgent action, including Japanese knotweed.
Should I Buy a Home with Japanese Knotweed?
Ideally, a home should be knotweed free before you buy one, whether you make it a requirement of purchase that it is removed, or the seller removes it. However, if a mortgage is approved and you are aware of the extent of the problem, then the choice is very much how much you are prepared to do to remedy the situation.
Establish How Big the Problem Is
If you’re concerned about an infestation on a property, it’s a good idea to get a professional survey done. Our specialists will be able to identify Japanese knotweed, according to the guidelines set out by the RICS and will put together an appropriate plan moving forward.
Understand Your Responsibility & Cooperate with Neighbours
If you’re buying a property with Japanese knotweed, it’s really important that you understand it’s now your responsibility to keep on top of, or even eradicate Japanese knotweed. If it spreads to neighbouring land, it could mean a bigger problem for both of you. Equally, if it originated from your neighbour, it’s worth keeping in good communication to work out solutions amicably.
Communicate the Knotweed Problem with Your Mortgage Lender
Pretending you don’t know you have Japanese knotweed is never advisable.
As a buyer, you need to safeguard your property against damage later on, even if the knotweed isn’t invading your boundaries yet. Understanding your mortgage lender’s requirements and working with a professional Japanese knotweed removal company will help you map out a plan.
If you’re buying a home that potentially has knotweed, or you have been advised you need a specialist Japanese Knotweed removal expert, please contact our team for a no obligation quote or photo identification.