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Estate agent - reasonableness in queries

  • 30-09-2022 12:05pm
    Registered Users Posts: 647 ✭✭✭

    Hi all,

    i have some queries with an estate agent about an older property i am interested in, its rural and pre 63, its has a small single story ext. to the rear and a dethatched small garage, its boundaries are generally a mess, 2-6m in width and inconsistent with all available mapping.

    the EA is telling me the engineering and survey teams can clarify the queries after bidding - i don't want to waste time bidding if these issues can not be cleaned up or the vendor has no apatite to clean them up for a buyer.

    Are the questions reasonable at viewing stage?



  • Registered Users Posts: 30,992 ✭✭✭✭Lumen

    Pointless asking the EA for this kind of detail, they're paid to obfuscate. You need to establish facts yourself and get professional advice where required.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    You don't say what your queries/concerns actually are.

    There's no estate agent can answer queries on the title, strucuture, or boundaries of any property they're selling. Their job is to sell the property— only a total idiot would offer any kind of warranty they're not qualified to give. Conveyancing is always caveat emptor— you should have an engineer's report etc conducted pre-contract regardless. A report/opinion drawn up by the vendor's engineer for their client isn't worth spit to the purchaser with whom that engineer has no legal relationship.

    So no, raising these concerns as a potential dealbreaker at viewing stage is not reasonable. Save it for if/when you have a bid accepted.

  • Registered Users Posts: 45,672 ✭✭✭✭muffler

    Have to disagree entirely regarding the last sentence of your post and also the bit about the vendor's engineer. Who in their right mind would bid for a property with legal problems let alone buy it?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,296 ✭✭✭CPTM

    The reality is that it doesn't make sense for the seller to pay for the survey (because the buyer should do it independently to avoid corruption), and it's not realistic for all bidders to get a survey done for every house they're bidding on. It's too expensive and time consuming.

    It's not a perfect world but it's the best and most reasonable option to bid in good faith and review any issues after the bidding process.

  • Registered Users Posts: 45,672 ✭✭✭✭muffler

    A pre sale survey conducted by an engineer/architect will be for the benefit of the vendor AND potential buyers. Such survey reports must be accompanied with copies of that professional's PI insurance.

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  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    In the current sellers market you could be putting in a bid on 10 or 20 properties before you actually manage to buy one, and if you're paying for the full-whack of pre-contract checks on every property you're even considering bidding on is going to take a fair chunk out of your deposit and/or furniture budget.

    An engineer's PI provider isn't going to pay out to anyone other than the Insured's client— and the engineer almost always has only one client, no more than any of the other professionals involved in the transaction.

    (Professional Indemnity is generally meaningless anyway, it's just a tick-box exercise. How many engineers, architects, estate agents etc involved in the tens of thousands of properties sold with fire safety defects, pyrite or mica have been successfully sued? Approximately zero?)

    So save the pre-contract checks until you're actually at the pre-contract stage of the process, and spend the money on something else.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


  • Registered Users Posts: 45,672 ✭✭✭✭muffler

    Your're on one of your many rants again and given the level of misunderstanding of pre-purchase surveys and certificates/reports coupled with the contradiction in your posts I'll bow out and leave you to offer whatever opinions you may have ... which, as shown in other threads, are generally wrong. Good luck!

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    "I can't think of any counter-arguments so I'm just going to insult you and walk away".

    There. I fixed it.😁

  • Registered Users Posts: 647 ✭✭✭Whatwicklow

    A ripe discussion, I suppose without the clarity on the issues any bidding and sale agreed price is built on sand if the documents are not available or the vendor has no apatite to remedy.

    Just a waste of everyone's time.

    I'll ask, sit tight and see.

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  • Subscribers Posts: 40,512 ✭✭✭✭sydthebeat

    These are simple questions to answer.

    Boundary issues.

    You purchase what is being sold to you as indicated on the contract map. If there's a discrepancy between that and the land registry map, get your surveyor to check at prepurchase report stage. They property should have a certificate of identity which indicates the associated boundaries and confirms all necessary services are within. No cert of identity? Then walk away.

    You haven't said what the issues are with the building, if any. If there are issues then again, there prepurchase report should highlight these (and offer a resolution if the author is worth their salt)

    At every stage prebid you have the opportunity to walk away if you don't feel everything is good / above board etc.

  • Registered Users Posts: 647 ✭✭✭Whatwicklow

    Thanks for the detail,

    No issues with the building per-se, just the boundary and planning irregularities.

    As two major deal breakers for all but the brave motivated cash buyer I'd have thought there would be basic straight forward answers available.

    Either, yes here is all the clarity you need


    No, what you see is what you're buying.

    Either scenario swings the value dramatically

  • Subscribers Posts: 40,512 ✭✭✭✭sydthebeat

    The answers are simple

    Boundary issues: see cert of identity

    Planning irregularities: see cert of compliance

    If the vendor doesn't provide either of these, then the property is toxic and most good professional advice is to walk away.