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16-08-2019, 23:29   #31
astrofool
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3 weeks is nothing to wait when selling/buying a house, however, there's usually nothing stopping an engineer doing a survey during this time, the engineer will then usually advise if there is any documentation required from the vendors solicitor (e.g. cert of compliance, or issues around the plot), so it's odd that your solicitor was the block here, but maybe there is something special about the house that's not being called out here that made your solicitor add this condition (you also need to keep the selling estate agent aware of all these items, as they will be talking to the vendor directly and will make them nervous about delays).

Do the vendor know you're worried about subsidence? Be up front, and tell them what the inspection is for, make sure the EA knows (they'll dread this as they'll have to put it back on the market with a question mark around subsidence).

Is the house detached? If it is attached to the neighbour, and the neighbour has subsidence, you need to run away fast.

It does sound like there's some naivety on your part, which can be understandable if it's a first purchase, be up front with issues, don't try and scrimp and save on what's required to buy the property (some beginners balk at the idea of getting a survey done before signing contracts in case they "lose" the money, this is a big red flag to any selling EA), the key is to keep everyone fully informed at all stages, and flag when and why decisions get made.
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17-08-2019, 07:31   #32
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3 weeks is nothing to wait when selling/buying a house, however, there's usually nothing stopping an engineer doing a survey during this time, the engineer will then usually advise if there is any documentation required from the vendors solicitor (e.g. cert of compliance, or issues around the plot), so it's odd that your solicitor was the block here, but maybe there is something special about the house that's not being called out here that made your solicitor add this condition (you also need to keep the selling estate agent aware of all these items, as they will be talking to the vendor directly and will make them nervous about delays).

Do the vendor know you're worried about subsidence? Be up front, and tell them what the inspection is for, make sure the EA knows (they'll dread this as they'll have to put it back on the market with a question mark around subsidence).

Is the house detached? If it is attached to the neighbour, and the neighbour has subsidence, you need to run away fast.

It does sound like there's some naivety on your part, which can be understandable if it's a first purchase, be up front with issues, don't try and scrimp and save on what's required to buy the property (some beginners balk at the idea of getting a survey done before signing contracts in case they "lose" the money, this is a big red flag to any selling EA), the key is to keep everyone fully informed at all stages, and flag when and why decisions get made.
My solicitor has the reputation of being incredibly through and has a history of finding issues that were not picked up on information provided by vendors side. Once he got that info from sellers solicitor, he needed to request a few extras from City Council which I preemptively arranged for collection from the Council.

I have to say we have been very communicative on each step, contacting the EA 3 times per week on all updates, even if it was just to say there was no movement.

I’m sorry if it’s any naivety on my part or I’m misreading, but why would anyone ever sign a contract before getting a structural engineer out on a visit, particularly to a second hand house? 4-5k is a lot of savings.
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17-08-2019, 07:37   #33
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Maybe the solicitor is the problem. Have you asked the neighbours if they have a contact for the owners. Might work quicker that way.
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17-08-2019, 08:38   #34
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Maybe the solicitor is the problem. Have you asked the neighbours if they have a contact for the owners. Might work quicker that way.
Our solicitor has all his stuff done a good while ago so he’s been a star. Just waiting the engineer report.
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17-08-2019, 08:55   #35
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Our solicitor has all his stuff done a good while ago so he’s been a star. Just waiting the engineer report.

You need to secure access or you will be paying for a report that will be full of caveats.

I think you also need to reamphasise to the vendors that you are a serious buyer, but need peace of mind before you fully commit therefore require access. Worst case scenario for them is further delay if they are looking for a quick sale that is not based on problems that they may or may not know exist.
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17-08-2019, 09:13   #36
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We've had to walk away from a purchase (very late in the process) in the past purely because of vendors being. . . .numpties. I cost quite a bit after searches, reports and solicitor fees etc. but still the best decision we ever made.

I've got to say I'm not sure I'd be wasting the effort on this one, OP. You're not going to spend a massive lump of money without getting your building quality reports done, who in their right mind would? The sellers are being downright unusual by not allowing access. This is basic stuff. What else will they be awkward about??? Too many red flags for me.



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17-08-2019, 09:24   #37
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If your in the process of getting a mortgage, will the banks even grant the transfer of funds until these queries are addressed?
You say neighbours had subsidence, can you get house insurance in the area? Can you call to the neighbours, have a chat, get a feel for what went on with their subsidence?
All sounds very odd tbh.
If the vendors wants a quick sale, without checks being granted, you can be sure there's something up.
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17-08-2019, 09:33   #38
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Don't walk away,..RUN. Seriously OP unless they buck their ideas up and give you access then don't waste anymore time.
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17-08-2019, 09:36   #39
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Walk away OP.

There's major red flags here and potentially very expensive solutions as others have said and you know yourself, but reading the tone of your posts the other pessure here is your own wish to close the sale.

It's probably a nice house (on the surface) in a area you want to be in, the wife is probably happy too, and maybe mortgage approval wasn't that easy... But by the sound of it and the seller's attitude it's really not worth the risk. Subsidence is no joke (I've seen the effects of that where a house literally started coming apart in the middle as the front sunk into the ground), and it could be the tip of the iceberg if they're now refusing access.

You've 2 options..

- Ring them and tell them that you will not be rushed into a deal, especially not without you having the ability to investigate the issues that have already been flagged first and any other checks. If they aren't happy, they can sell to someone else

- withdraw your offer anyway and look elsewhere. There'll be other houses

Try and take your own desire to close out of it. I think you know it's sounding more and more like a bad deal.
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17-08-2019, 10:29   #40
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You need to secure access or you will be paying for a report that will be full of caveats.

I think you also need to reamphasise to the vendors that you are a serious buyer, but need peace of mind before you fully commit therefore require access. Worst case scenario for them is further delay if they are looking for a quick sale that is not based on problems that they may or may not know exist.
Thanks but it is very hard to not be concerned about the fact that they are denying access after we told them of our concerns over the subsidence in the neighbours and possible damage to the draining.

I am trying hard not to be paranoid but what other reason would they not allow access in the crucial days before the sale.

I mean have the drains CCTV, plumber and electrican lined up. They know this. We could technically get it done before Wednesday. Why else would they not be allowing access?
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17-08-2019, 10:31   #41
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Originally Posted by airy fairy View Post
If your in the process of getting a mortgage, will the banks even grant the transfer of funds until these queries are addressed?
You say neighbours had subsidence, can you get house insurance in the area? Can you call to the neighbours, have a chat, get a feel for what went on with their subsidence?
All sounds very odd tbh.
If the vendors wants a quick sale, without checks being granted, you can be sure there's something up.
I may talk to the neighbours.
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17-08-2019, 10:35   #42
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Walk away OP.

There's major red flags here and potentially very expensive solutions as others have said and you know yourself, but reading the tone of your posts the other pessure here is your own wish to close the sale.

It's probably a nice house (on the surface) in a area you want to be in, the wife is probably happy too, and maybe mortgage approval wasn't that easy... But by the sound of it and the seller's attitude it's really not worth the risk. Subsidence is no joke (I've seen the effects of that where a house literally started coming apart in the middle as the front sunk into the ground), and it could be the tip of the iceberg if they're now refusing access.

You've 2 options..

- Ring them and tell them that you will not be rushed into a deal, especially not without you having the ability to investigate the issues that have already been flagged first and any other checks. If they aren't happy, they can sell to someone else

- withdraw your offer anyway and look elsewhere. There'll be other houses

Try and take your own desire to close out of it. I think you know it's sounding more and more like a bad deal.
Good advice, but as I just mentioned to the other poster, even if they come back Monday to say they have changed their mind and will allow access, there are huge red flags in my mind regarding the pressure we are being put under.
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17-08-2019, 11:36   #43
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I may talk to the neighbours.
This could actually solve a lot of issues.
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17-08-2019, 12:20   #44
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Hi all, just looking for some advice.

Sale agreed on a house. 3 bed semi d in a city centre. Their solicitor took 3 weeks for papers to get over to our solicitor and I feel that we have been pressured to make up that lost time since.

This solicitor delay delayed our engineer who was going on hols. We eventually buckled to pressure and got a second engineer to do the survey and speed things up. They threatened to pull out so we got in a different engineer.

We had the engineer out last Thursday week and we are awaiting the survey results, expected today. We asked for access for access for a plumber last week too but they cancelled on the day before. This was due the day before the engineer.

Now we are being told they will not allow access to a plumber or any other visits and expect us to sign contracts on Wednesday. The engineer said in passing he cannot access the drains out the back but they need to be checked via cctv as there is clear subsidence on a neighbours extension which might have damaged the drains below (drains flow under the sellers house and into that neighbours).

Thoughts?
Run a mile. Buyer beware and all that. Obviously the current owner is well aware of the issues. With the property market on the up, I'm hearing about lots of shisters out there being economical with the truth. Someone I know went sale agreed on a property recently, was told there was no issues, and only for the knowledge of the buyer could have walked themselves into a planning issue that would have been very expensive to resolve.

Last edited by Hollybeg; 17-08-2019 at 12:23.
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17-08-2019, 13:02   #45
 
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Sold and bought houses over the years.
Best thing we ever did was to send in our own plumber electrician and carpenter.
We also used an engineer purely to make sure everything was built to planning permission eg entrance septic tank etc. But the trades people saved us money.
Why would you send in a carpenter?
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