We want to put in an offer on a place in Aylesbury. Is there any advice you can give us about repairs to Flemish bond brickwork?
Over the centuries, the most popular, and the most durable, choice for construction material has been the brick. Brick is made of a variety of ingredients, come in different shapes and sizes and colours, and are made for specific purposes from being resistant to acid or chemicals to simple building projects, as well as being either solid or having a variety of hollows deliberately built into their structure, depending on the purpose to which they’ll be put, the budget for the construction and a number of other factors which will come into play.
Because brick has been used for constructing homes and other buildings for so many centuries, bricklayers and designers have devised a wide variety of designs for how the bricks are placed together, from the common and simple stretcher, Flemish and English bonds to the more complex styles. Examples of the great variety can be observed throughout Aylesbury.
But, what the bricks and the way that they are laid all have in common is that they all have their susceptibilities, which your Surveyor Local chartered surveyor will analyse and inspect as part of your survey. Some of the more typical issues are frost attack and damage, spalling (flaking), efflorescence or staining, sulphate attack, wall-tie failure, weathering and disintegration, and mortar deterioration, amongst other problems.
In all cases, your Surveyor Local chartered surveyor will inspect the condition of the walls (where the brick is visible) and check for issues, highlighting the state in the report, and making recommendations for remedial action (long-term or immediate) depending on what has been found. It is always worth getting a selection of quotes from accredited and recommended builders for any of the work that has been identified. Local builders include:
- Three Hundreds Building Ltd., 75 Aylesbury Road, Bierton, Aylesbury, HP22 5BT (Tel: 01296 424536)
- A. J. Shaw Building Services, 21 Oakfield Road, Aylesbury, HP20 1LH (Tel: 01296 433671)
To get started with your survey, try Surveyor Local’s instant quote generator (scroll to the top of this page and fill a few details in the simple form). Or, if you’re ready to appoint your Surveyor Local chartered surveyor, call us on 0800 038 6667 and one of our advisers will get you under way.
A house we intend to buy is built on clay soil. Will your Aylesbury HomeBuyer Report look into this?
The HomeBuyer Report is specifically designed and laid out so that clients can find what they want easily and, more importantly, understand what the report is saying. Each HomeBuyer Report will provide the client with detailed information on:
- the current market valuation of the property (this is optional, so ensure you ask for it in your quote if required)
- background information and issues on the general property and its location
- structural problems (such as evidence of subsidence or heave)
- estimate of the cost for rebuilding (for insurance purposes)
- suspicion of the presence of hazardous materials (e.g. asbestos, although this will not be investigated in any detail)
- assessment of the damp-proof course (DPC), the drainage and the home’s insulation (but note that drains themselves are not tested)
- condition of the timbers throughout the property (where accessible), specifically identifying existence of woodworm or rot
- test results for damp in all walls
- details of any urgent defects that will need specialist inspection prior to signing the contract
- details of any major defects that will have an impact on the property’s value
- planning and control issues for the attention of your conveyancing solicitor
The HomeBuyer Report costs an average of £400, although this is dependent on the size and location of the property. Surveyor Local offers a quality survey product for a very competitive price, so it makes sense to try our online quote calculator (simply fill in a few details in the form at the top of this page) or call us on 0800 038 6667.
There is a real benefit in booking an Aylesbury surveyor to carry out your HomeBuyer Report, because they are familiar with the local soil composition, and they will have witnessed the effects of clay soil subsidence problems first-hand. In some more extreme cases, the building foundations may need extra support, but this can be costly.
To find out more about what the survey can do for your property in Aylesbury, contact our team of advisers at Surveyor Local on 0800 038 6667, and they will be happy to provide you with a free survey quote and to assign you one of the best surveyors available.
Will there be anything we need to look into if we are planning to purchase a flat in Aylesbury in the vicinity of conservation area, particularly with respect to house prices?
There are over 10,000 official conservation areas in the UK, overseen by the local councils. These are locations around monuments and buildings that are deemed to be of significant architectural or historical interest, such as Regency town centres or mining villages. Your surveyor must have the relevant local knowledge and be able to understand the connection conservation areas might have with the home you are buying, and the impact they have on its value. Property values will likely be inflated, which is down to the areas being largely unspoilt.
For the Aylesbury Vale local authority, there are currently 83 designated conservation areas, with the most recent additions (Quainton and Ivinghoe) being confirmed in 2015. The full list can be found on the council’s website.
Historic England also review and assess the state of the conservation areas on an annual basis, creating the Heritage at Risk register, which can be viewed online to assess whether the council’s management plan is effective, and what is happening to remove the conservation area if it appears on the register. As of 18 February 2019, none of the Aylesbury Vale conservation areas appears on the register.
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.
Need a chartered surveyor with loads of experience and local knowledge? Look no further than Surveyor Local! Give our team of friendly advisers on 0800 038 6667 and they will be happy to help.
We are buying a loft-conversion in Aylesbury, and we are sensitive to the cost of roof repairs. What does an Aylesbury house surveyor look for?
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.
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 purlins to trusses, from fascias to soffits, from rafters to fitness for purpose of a loft conversion.
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, such as missing, loose or cracked tiles, worn or cracked flashing, mould and rot (internally and externally), timber pests and rot, etc.
In the past, roof maintenance would be carried out with just ladders and 'crawler boards'. This practice is terribly unsafe, and contractors today will insist that scaffolding be used. Once the surveyor has delivered their report, consider arranging a quote from an Aylesbury roofing specialist for the job itself. Depending on the cost, you might like to consider renegotiating the price with your vendor. Speak to A M Roof and Gutter, Greenleaves, Marsh Road, Little Kimble, Aylesbury, HP22 5XS (Tel: 01296 615795) for more details.
Worried about the survey and what it might reveal? Let Surveyor Local alleviate some of that concern by calling us on 0800 038 6667 right now.
We are planning to buy a 1965-built property in Aylesbury and found that the dining room floor was uneven. Is this a serious risk, and what can be done to fix subsidence if it is identified?
One of the principal defects that a chartered surveyor will look for during the inspection of a property is the dreaded subsidence, which conjures up images of sagging walls, large cracks along the property and even collapse.
Subsidence is defined as sudden or gradual shrinkage in the soil that surrounds foundations of a building, forcing a downward settling of the building as the weight becomes too much for the subsoil to support as it once did, and it usually occurs with little or no movement along the horizontal.
The Institution of Structural Engineers don’t recommend underpinning for the large majority of subsidence issues; rather this is treated as a last resort, where piles are dug and filled with concrete to support the existing foundations. Since the biggest percentage of subsidence issues are caused by trees and other plants in the vicinity draining the soil, judicious pruning or evening removal may be enough to rectify the problem (but note that such activity may also create other issues, so an expert’s advice should be sought). And, of course, if the drains are broken, then these should be repaired as soon as possible.
Because of the severity of these issues, it is imperative that an expert chartered surveyor from Surveyor Local looks at the property in order to report on the condition, the diagnosis and recommendations for any immediate action to be taken to resolve the situation.
Try Surveyor Local’s online instant home survey quote generator (scroll to the top of this page to fill in the simple form), or, if you would prefer to talk to someone, call our waiting advisers on 0800 038 6667.
There is a semi-detached house in the HP22 postcode area priced at £335,000. What things does a surveyor consider when calculating house prices in Aylesbury?
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 the Aylesbury Vale area.
This means the average price of completed transactions for semi-detached houses in Aylesbury Vale in December 2018 was £328,260, which is £6,740 less than the asking price for the cited property. With regards to other types of property, the averages for the same month in Aylesbury Vale were:
Information © 2019 HM Land Registry. Retrieved from HM Land Registry website on 16 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.
There may be bugs at the property we're planning to buy in Aylesbury, but we are not certain; will the Building Survey investigate this?
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.
Your chartered surveyor will look out for evidence of the common problems, such as droppings or holes in wood (often accompanied by adjacent piles of dust) 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.
The RICS guidelines on the issue of pests are something of a 'grey area', so specific fears should be mentioned to your RICS surveyor. Speak to an expert, like Activ-8 (Services) Ltd., Unit 56, Rabans Close, Aylesbury, HP19 8RS (Tel: 01296 436378), for more detail.
If you’re at all concerned about your survey and what it covers, why not call one of our friendly advisers at Surveyor Local right now on 0800 038 6667?