As the housing market splutters back into life post-lockdown, many aspects of the house buying process will be markedly different.
One of them is how homebuyers surveys are conducted.
New Government guidance gives conveyancers some indication of how surveys should proceed. Moreover they state ‘surveyors should be clear in any reports about areas which they weren’t able to inspect due to public health limitations.’
When I read this, I gave a wry smile.
As I’ve said in the past, homebuyers surveys are usually not worth the paper they’re written on when it comes to chimneys and solid fuel installation.
This is in ‘normal’ times. In the current climate, this demonstrates why it is now perhaps even MORE important to get any solid fuel installation and flue system checked before you buy.
Luckily, most chimneys sweeps have now put procedures into place to ensure appointments for sweeping and inspections can take place as normal.
The sad fact is that thousands upon thousands of homes are bought and sold every year in the UK with a faulty solid fuel installation.
This can leave new homeowners facing a bill of thousands to rectify – money they could have had knocked off the overall purchase price if they’d have got it inspected before the sale was completed.
Once post-lockdown sales start trickling through, I sense the percentage will be that bit higher.
Restrictions on surveys, a wish to get sales done quickly and perhaps even the amount of DIY installs done during lockdown… it all points to a possible increase.
Please don’t buy a home with a ‘real’ fireplace without getting it checked first by a professional, registered sweep.
It’s a small price to pay for peace of mind at a time when worries are numerous…
Mr Soot Chimney Sweep is a HETAS Approved Sweep, and member of the Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps, offering a professional and friendly chimney sweep and stove service. Book Mr Soot online or call 0800 0541154.