The seller has mentioned that there is a risk of powdery, brown asbestos walls in the property in Ashton-under-Lyne. Why would there be asbestos there, is it dangerous, can it be remedied, and what should I do?
Asbestos is the general name given to the group of six fibrous, silicate materials that are now known to be harmful to organisms.
Asbestos has been mined for hundreds of years, but it was only in the last century that it was found to be so detrimental to health, although it still took until 1999 for there to be an outright ban in the UK.
The most common type found in the UK is white asbestos (chrysotile), which was often used in roofs, floors, ceilings, walls and insulation, thereby appearing in all manner of construction materials. From 1986, it was only white asbestos that remained in use in the UK for construction purposes.
Of the other types:
- brown asbestos (amosite) was used in in cement sheets, ceiling tiles and pipe insulation
- blue asbestos (crocidolite) was used in spray-on ceilings, insulation, and plastic and cement products
- green asbestos (anthophyllite), although limited, was used in insulation and general construction, and
- tremolite and actinolite were not used commercially
Often considered to be a ‘miracle’ material before its deleterious effects were understood, asbestos was chosen for its resistance to fire and electricity, its tensile strength, and its sound-proofing qualities, coupled with its relative cheapness to produce.
Commonly called asbestosis, the curly or needle-shaped fibres usually caused mesothelioma (attack on the lining of the lungs, causing cancer). However, breathing in a single fibre will not be injurious, nor will it risk death.
During a survey, your chartered surveyor will not be able to confirm the existence of asbestos, since they will not investigate further than visual inspection because of the dangers highlighted above. However, they will be experienced in looking for it and will report their suspicions in the survey, recommending that it be checked out thoroughly.
For more information on the surveying process with respect to asbestos and other aspects of a house’s structure, contact one of our advisers at Surveyor Local on 0800 038 6667, and also receive your free quote.
When purchasing a period, semi-detached home in poor condition in Ashton-under-Lyne, should I commission the more detailed Building Survey?
The Building Survey is a comprehensive inspection by a chartered surveyor, and it provides:
- An inspection of the building(s) at the property
- A full survey report of the findings, both good and bad
- A property valuation (if specifically requested and carries an additional cost)
The customer can choose this type of survey for any property that they are buying, but the RICS recommends that it is most suitable for:
- Listed buildings and some properties in conservation areas
- Properties that were built more than 50 years ago
- Properties that you want to extend, change significantly, or update in an integral way
- Buildings that have been recently subjected to such change
- Properties of an unusual construction, or built with unusual materials, irrespective of their age
The price of the Ashton-under-Lyne Building Survey is dependent on the location, size and construction of the property, but the cost usually comes in between £500 and £1,300.
If you want to check out the differences between the various products on offer at Surveyor Local, click on compare the surveys.
The time is now to line up your experienced chartered surveyor with Surveyor Local: with us, you get a great service for a competitively low cost. Call our waiting team of advisers on 0800 038 6667 now.
Is there anything I would be advised to verify if I’m purchasing a period property in Ashton-under-Lyne inside a conservation area?
Conservation areas are generally designated as such by the local council, although the governmental public body Historic England has the power to make designations in consultation with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
According to the Historic England website (retrieved on 30 January 2019), conservation areas are typically so designated for these types of locations (not an exhaustive list):
- centres of historic villages, towns and cities
- fishing and mining villages
- 18th-, 19th- and 20th-century suburbs
- model housing estates up to the late 20th century
- country houses set in their historic parks
- historic transport links (sections of canals, railways, and airfields)
- industrial heritage sites
Conservation areas, by their nature of being protected from significant change and managing conformity, are an attractive location in which to buy a house, but the owner should be aware of their responsibilities and, before buying a house, being aware of any changes that don’t have planning consent since this may require expense to reverse them. This information is highlighted in the survey and will also be directed to your legal representative for further investigation and analysis with the local council. The responsibilities incumbent upon any owner underlines the importance of appointing a focused and thorough surveyor like those we have at Surveyor Local.
This also means that houses in designated conservation areas naturally come at a premium, so potential buyers should be aware that properties will likely be more expensive than similar homes located outside the boundary of the conservation area.
RICS surveyors in Ashton-under-Lyne can be expected to note if the property might be located in a conservation area and Section I (Issues for Legal Advisers) of a HomeBuyer Report will suggest further investigations to be raised by your conveyancing solicitor. Unapproved extensions to the building should be advised in your survey as a note; however, these are the concern for your lawyer. Smith & Tetley are a local solicitors’ firm situated at 23-25 Booth Street, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 7LF (Tel: 0161 330 2865), who might be able to advise. Or you could try Homeward Legal.
Get your instant quote in moments with Surveyor Local by filling in a few short details in the form at the top of this page. When you’re ready to set up an inspection appointment, call our friendly team of advisers on 0800 038 6667.
Our agent warned us that access to the roof of the home in Ashton-under-Lyne could be difficult to arrange. What should we be concerned about during the survey work?
If the roof at a property you are buying has a major issue that needs to be resolved, your Surveyor Local chartered surveyor will easily identify it and its cause, providing recommendations for remedial courses of actions.
The problem with roofs is that they are most likely to have issues because they are hit harder by the elements and weathering than other parts of the home’s structure. In addition, there are so many different types of roof design (e.g. gambrel, open gable, cross-hipped, clerestory, flat, butterfly, dormer, mansard, etc.), each with their particular foibles and points of weakness, that, even if the structure looks sound, they could well be harbouring a hidden issue. Our surveyors are experts and thorough during their inspection.
The types of material used in their construction can also be a source of problems, whether it is the familiar shingles or slate, shaped or flat, metals like zinc, aluminium, stainless steel, lead or copper, or other coverings such as bituminous felt, plastic, resin or fibreglass.
Because of the importance of the roof to the long life of the property, the surveyor will thoroughly inspect all aspects of the construction (assuming they are readily and safely accessible), from flashings to soffits, from purlins to chimneys.
The surveyor may find, during the inspection, a number of relatively minor issues that, without remedial work, may become a more serious – and expensive – problem to resolve. These include missing, loose or cracked tiles, worn felting, blocked gullies and gutters, worn or cracked flashing, leaking skylights, mould and rot (internally and externally), weathered materials, timber pests and rot, blocked drainage, roof sag, and ponding or pooling.
Most roofing work, unless you are planning a major extension, won’t require planning permission, but may require building regulations certification. Your surveyor will be happy to advise. Since most roofing work, other than simple maintenance tasks, will likely cost a lot of money to resolve, obtaining a number of quotes for any work might be a useful bargaining tool to renegotiate the agreed price with the seller. Speak to a local expert, like K. D. Roofing Services Ltd., 41 Lees Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 8DP (Tel: 0161 344 1749).
Get your instant Surveyor Local quote for your Ashton-under-Lyne survey by filling in the form at the top of this page with a few simple details. When you’re ready to get your survey fixed in the diary, call our waiting team of advisers on 0800 038 6667; we’re open 7 days a week for your convenience.
I want to buy a semi-detached house in Ashton-under-Lyne (OL6 postcode area), and the vendor is asking £180,000. What will an Ashton-under-Lyne surveyor consider when carrying out a professional valuation?
A qualified RICS surveyor will go to the property as well as considering the wealth of area knowledge and factors that have a bearing on the value of property. There are a huge number of issues that could affect house prices (for example, the quality of nearby schools, or whether the garden is overlooked). It can help to benchmark selling-prices recorded for similar properties in Ashton-under-Lyne (Tameside local authority).
This means the average price of completed transactions for semi-detached houses in Ashton-under-Lyne in December 2018 was £160,335, which is £19,665 less than the asking price for the cited property. With regards to other types of property, the averages for the same month in Ashton-under-Lyne were:
Information © 2019 HM Land Registry. Retrieved from HM Land Registry website on 15 February 2019
An impartial way to get a formal house valuation is with a HomeBuyer Report, which includes a Property Valuation Report (PVR) as a core component. A qualified RICS surveyor will be part of the Valuer Registration Scheme, which reinforces professional standards.
If you need further guidance, why not try our online instant quote generator (scroll to the top of the page and fill in a few pieces of information) or call our team on 0800 038 6667.
Do all Ashton-under-Lyne surveys include a valuation and cost of rebuild estimate (including the cost of rebuilding a garage) and how is it worked out?
A Property Valuation Report is not a survey per se, although it is an associated product that chartered surveyors can offer, on the proviso that they are also a registered valuer. This is something that Surveyor Local can add to your choice of survey, and, if required, you only need to pick up the phone to us on 0800 038 6667 to discuss your particular needs and we’ll get the right service set up for you with the minimum of fuss.
A Property Valuation Report is requested when a definitive answer on the value of a property is required. Note that it’s not the same as a market appraisal, which is a guide or estimate to the property price that has absolutely no legal standing. Typically, a Property Valuation Report will be required in the following circumstances:
- loans and mortgage applications, to verify the true value of the property to guarantee sufficient equity remains in the building to pay off the mortgage or loan should the buyer default on payments
- probate and wills in order to establish the amount of inheritance tax owing from the legacy
- Help to Buy to establish a loan redemption figure
- buying or selling a property to ensure that the price being asked is a fair one
- shared ownership to confirm the share of equity figures
- matrimonial ownership, which follows the same design as that for shared ownership
- Capital Gains Tax to confirm the tax amounts due to HMRC
- Buy-to-Let rental value confirmation and assessment of loan or mortgage affordability
- dispute resolution to assess the financial share in the property
- immigration for the valuation of any immovable assets
The report looks at the location of the property, its features, size and age, while it considers the identified problems and issues within its boundaries. The approach that the registered valuer will adopt is:
- Research: market research to identify similar properties of age, condition and size in the near environs and check how much they were sold for most recently
- Inspection: an assessment of the actual property across its boundaries, inside and out, where accessible and safe to do so
- Analysis: a translation of all the findings into a meaningful report, always written in plain English, for the client with the headline valuation
The price of a Property Valuation Report starts from £249, which includes VAT and is fixed), dependent on the size of the property being valued. If you would like a Property Valuation Report added to either your Building Survey or HomeBuyer Report, please contact one of our team of friendly advisers on 0800 038 6667 and they will be happy to get things set up for you so that you are ready to get going today!
An Ashton-under-Lyne Building Survey and HomeBuyer Report won't, however, include a valuation as standard, although a valuation can be added for a nominal fee. Alternatively, a Property Valuation Report (PVR) can be completed in isolation. For more information and advice, try our instant online Survey Quote generator, or call our team of advisers on 0800 038 6667.
Does the surveyor look into the safety of the gas installations at the house in Ashton-under-Lyne?
Everyone is aware that the volatility and the highly inflammable nature of natural gas make it a very dangerous substance if not regulated and checked by qualified experts. It is also for this reason that, where there is a gas supply to a property, your chartered surveyor will inspect the system.
All work on gas appliances and connection to the mains must comply with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, while any new heat-producing gas appliance installed (e.g. a cooker hob, or gas fire) requires the Local Authority to be informed so that it will comply with building regulations in order to gain the requisite approval.
A certificate of works will be provided by a qualified Gas Safe engineer, and this will be sought and checked for validity and status by the surveyor during the inspection. Regulations legally require landlords to complete appliance and installation inspections annually. Non-compliance penalties include heavy fines.
As part of the survey, the chartered surveyor will visually check all the accessible parts of the gas system, such as the meter location and position and any gas-connected fixtures like chimney breasts or flues. However, if there are any fittings, they won't be dislodged for inspection, and neither will they remove covers or piping since they are not qualified to do so.
Where the surveyor identifies any area for potential concern, they will note this in the survey report, with recommendations for any remedial action to be taken, alongside a measure of severity. Where a problem is deemed critical, if only for a qualified engineer to check and assess the situation, any significant cost can be used to open up conversations with the seller about the possibility of offsetting such a cost by reducing the asking price.
Gas is potentially hazardous and, should you have any concerns about it, call a Gas Safe engineer. If you smell gas, call the free national Gas Emergency Services number immediately on 0800 111 999.
Local highly-rated Gas Safe engineers in the area can be identified or located at the official Gas Safe Register site.
We are concerned about insects at the property we want to buy in Ashton-under-Lyne; how do we investigate further?
The issue of pests in and around the home is often seen as a small or minor, even irrelevant, inconvenience or annoyance that simply needs to be accepted and managed. However, the threat of many pests is very real and, with certain examples, will have a risk to the occupants’ health or destroy the fabric and structure of a building.
In addition, evidence of an infestation of pests is not always easy to find. Some obvious examples of common pests include:
- rodents – gnawing through electric cables (causing fire risk), timber, pipes and brickwork, coupled with their ability to produce many offspring very quickly and the risk of transporting harmful bacteria around the home makes mice and rats a significant pest to remove
- cockroaches – multiplying very quickly and spreading disease through food (primarily) and their ability to hide in crevices and difficult to find places makes cockroaches a major source of concern and difficult to remove
- death-watch beetle – their characteristic tapping to attract a mate leads to sleepless nights (the vigil for dying people being the origin of the name), while their propensity for boring through wood threatens to destroy the supporting beams in ceilings, roofs and floors
- woodworm – another woodboring pest that turns wood into dust and can seriously and quickly undermine the structure of a property
- carpet beetle larvae – textile-destroying pests
- woodlice – although not a major pest themselves, they are a potential indication of damp within the property
Your Ashton-under-Lyne chartered surveyor will look out for evidence of the common problems, such as droppings or holes in wood, and make recommendations based on the severity of the problem and how recent the infestation appears to be. Solutions and remedies to eradicate pests may include the use of poisons, insecticides and traps, but more humane ways of removing pests are available. It’s always worth obtaining a number of quotes from companies qualified to handle such issues so that you can request a reduction in the asking price from the seller.
Because there are so many different pests, the chartered surveyor will not be able to test and check for every single type other than the common instances. If you suspect that a specific issue with pests exists, then you should bring it to your surveyor’s attention and they will be able to focus on finding the particular evidence, should it exist.
Our chartered surveyors at Surveyor Local are all very experienced in looking for specific evidence of pests, so it makes sense for you to get them on board to have a look at your Ashton-under-Lyne property. Call us now on 0800 038 6667 to get things in motion!
In a Ashton Under Lyne HomeBuyer Report, what are the usual an red light rating defects affecting rainwater pipes and gutters?
Serious concerns are marked as condition rating 3. In some cases, such a rating may indicate further expert opinion is needed before an accurate statement can be given. The format of the RICS HomeBuyer Report is clear and easy to read. As buyers in Ashton Under Lyne are unlikely to be experts in local building techniques and materials themselves, the report is written with as little jargon as possible. The report uses colour coded condition ratings to give property purchasers a clear understanding of the severity of defects uncovered during the survey.
For a Ashton Under Lyne house, one issue is missing downspouts. External areas covered by E3 are inspected visually. Buyers should be aware that although drainage is reported on in this section, other aspects of the water system are referred to elsewhere combined system problems.
When I visited a property I intend to move into it appeared that there is old wiring. Does a Ashton Under Lyne survey go into detail on the electrics?
When carrying out a Homebuyer Report in Ashton Under Lyne a RICS surveyor will typically mention the electrical system if it is apparent that the electrics are in an unsafe state of repair. This will include a general look-over of the unconcealed parts of the wiring as well as areas e.g. inspecting the condition of any fitted appliances, e.g. water heaters or verifying the condition of a sample of the range of light fittings and switch gear. Verifying the location of the documentation from a test on the condition of the electrical installations handled by a suitably qualified electrician should be part of the survey in Ashton Under Lyne.
The IEE suggest that a Periodic Inspection Report be completed every 10 years (5 if letting out).