We are planning to buy a home in Sheffield and have spotted that the windows in the basement did not line up. What are the risks, and what subsidence issues does the Sheffield Surveyor report on?
Subsidence is the movement of the foundations of a home that compromises its structural integrity, although most homes experience some minor cracking. Heave is less common and is caused by the death or removal of a large shrub or tree and the plant stops drawing moisture from the earth, allowing it to expand and push the foundations upwards.
Merely superficial cracks not caused by subsidence can be filled and repainted. Inside, keep an eye out for new cracks in the plaster, and 'rippling' in wallpaper that isn't caused by damp.
Restoration work cannot begin until the original source of the movement is found. Removing or even pruning the trees causing subsidence may be enough to halt any further movement, although this might exacerbate the problem, so expert advice and direction should be sought before starting work. Existing trees must be well-managed, and new trees should be planted at a safe distance from the exterior walls of you and your neighbours’ properties. Place pine, birch and cherry trees, for example, at least 10m away. Underpinning could be the only option in some cases, unfortunately. A surveyor will be able to recommend who to speak to about the best course of action, when it comes to tree removal.
For your instant Sheffield Home Survey quote from Surveyor Local, fill in the simple form at the top of this page, or call our team of advisers on 0800 022 4428 to get your survey moving.
Is it the right choice to upgrade to full structural survey prior to buying an extended, Edwardian, duplex flat close to Sheffield?
The Full Structural Survey is now called the RICS Level 3 Survey, which is essentially a later evolution of the same product.
While a RICS Level 2 Survey is detailed enough if you are investigating a mid-century (or later), unmodified flat built from normal building materials, the RICS Level 3 Survey is the appropriate choice for the flat described in the question.
Approximately three days after an exhaustive survey of all the accessible areas, a detailed report (set out in the surveyor's individual format) is sent to the purchaser giving comprehensive and notable information about the state of repair of the home, along with information on defects and potential remedies.
There will be certain limitations with a property survey to bear in mind, because the RICS chartered surveyor will not be able to force or open the fabric of the Sheffield flat (unless the owner’s consent provided), an example being moving heavy furniture. Over and above house surveys, flats usually make a full survey more complicated, meaning a surveyor is only authorised to investigate the flat itself, though they may also outline information about shared sections of the property, like any alarm system. For more details and a comparison of the differences between surveys, see the following article.
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Which Sheffield surveys include a valuation and cost of rebuild estimate?
Sheffield RICS Level 2 Surveys include a property valuation and a reinstatement cost as an integral part of the report, which incorporates the cost of rebuilding retaining walls and any permanent outhouses in addition to the main building.
To calculate an accurate estimate of the value of the building, the registered valuer will combine their in-depth understanding of the Sheffield market with other aspects relating to the property (e.g. size of garden or number of bedrooms), the architecture and construction materials, key assumptions (such as there being no hazardous materials to remove, or there being no knotty legal issues affecting the sale), connection to mains utilities, proximity to amenities and transport links, and environmental considerations (such as being near a busy, polluted thoroughfare).
A RICS Level 3 Survey does not include a valuation as standard, but we can add one for a small additional fee. Alternatively, a Property Valuation Report (PVR) can be commissioned. Give our expert advisers at Surveyor Local a call on 0800 022 4428 to establish which survey best suits your needs.
Will the property surveyor look for flood damage, or if nearby homes have been affected in Sheffield?
A wide variety of factors can cause flood-damage, ranging from inadequate drainage to tidal activity. Both house-purchasers and homeowners in areas at a high risk of flooding are therefore right to be worried. Your RICS surveyor may use several methods to determine if the Sheffield house in question is in danger, and they will advise on repairs and preventative measures.
Familiarity with characteristics of the local area likely to affect residence enables the RICS surveyor to identify whether flooding may be a risk or not, even if the property has not itself flooded before. The data used to compile third-party flood assessments also considers flood defences and historic claims.
Worried about what your survey might reveal and how to deal with it? Call Surveyor Local now on 0800 022 4428 and one of waiting advisers will help to reduce your anxiety.
There is a flat in Sheffield priced at £118,000. What things does a surveyor consider when calculating house prices?
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 Sheffield.
This means the average price of completed transactions for flats in Sheffield in June 2018 was £112,287, which is £4,713 less than the asking price for the cited property. With regards to other types of property, the averages for the same month in Sheffield were:
Information © 2018 HM Land Registry. Retrieved from HM Land Registry website on 17 August 2018
An impartial way to get a formal house valuation is with a RICS Level 2 Survey, 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 Home Survey Quote generator (scroll to the top of the page and fill in a few pieces of information) or call our team on 0800 022 4428.
What should we be worried about when buying a home near to the Holmes Farm Closed Landfill Site near Alsing Road, and landfill sites generally?
Sites operated for landfill take many forms (for example, hazardous waste material, or general household, commercial and industrial waste, like the one located at Holmes Farm Closed Landfill Site). There are many such sites that affect several thousands of people in England, including Sheffield, and worries include bacterial decomposition resulting in methane being released into the atmosphere, while health issues (such as abdominal wall problems) have been associated to landfill sites.
Surveyors in Sheffield will flag up any structural defects resulting directly being proximal to the landfill, and your lawyer will conduct environmental searches of the British Geological database as well as contacting the Sheffield Local Authority and giving you the results of the search in their report on title.
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On a RICS Level 2 Survey carried out in Sheffield, what effect can a red-light rating have on elements covered in Section E of the survey?
The format of the RICS Level 2 Survey is clear and easy to read. A 'traffic light' system of colour-coding is used to confirm the severity of any defects or points of interest included in the report. Matters which require urgent action are highlighted with a 'red' or condition rating of 3, and such issues can have a significant impact on a Sheffield house or flat's value.
Section E of the report covers all external aspects of the building (including any permanent outhouses). Quite a common example of the type of defect found here is ledger board problems.
If you want to see the differences between the various surveys on offer by Surveyor Local, we provide a few sample reports (available on our website), or, if you want to talk through your specific questions with somebody, give our advisers a call on 0800 022 4428.
One of the neighbours said that there had previously been a problem with damp from the leaking roof in the cottage in Sheffield. Which issues relating to the roof will be investigated in the survey?
Sheffield properties in otherwise fine condition can often hide difficulties with the roof. From dormers to valley gutters, every part of the roof will be reported on in the surveyor. The surveyor could also suggest that some of the faults must be dealt with immediately.
It may be inconvenient to employ scaffolding to perform repairs, especially in the busy parts of Sheffield, but it is a health and safety necessity. It may be advisable to source a few estimates for any work highlighted in the survey, prior to exchange.
Local roofers include:
- R & A Roofing Services, Unit 1, 73 Earl Street, Sheffield, S14PY (Tel: 0114 321 6533)
- Dalton Roofing, Unit 1, Bankside Works, Lumley Street, Sheffield, S4 7ZJ (Tel: 0114 321 7797).
For your instant and free Sheffield Homebuyer’s Survey Quote, use our online generator by filling in the form at the top of this page, or, if you want to talk to someone about your survey needs, call 0800 022 4428 to talk to one of our survey advisers.