Buyer beware

When buying it is most important to give careful consideration to the condition of the property. The legal rule is “buyer beware”.

The Seller does not guarantee the condition of the property. It is up to the Buyer to have whatever kind of survey the Buyer considers necessary.

You cannot rely on the Mortgage Lender’s Valuation Report. This is not a survey but simply a valuation carried out so that the Lender can be satisfied that the property is worth at least the amount you are asking to borrow.

We can recommend local surveyors who can carry out the appropriate survey.

It is essential for your Solicitor to carefully check all conditions (legally called “covenants”) affecting the property. You will have to comply with these.

Sometimes they require you to obtain the prior written consent of the original Developer or Owner before you carry out any structural alterations or additions, even erecting a conservatory.

Consent under the condition is needed even though you obtain any necessary Council Planning and/or Building Regulation Consent.

Failure to do so can cause problems when you come to sell.

Flats are normally leasehold for a term of 99 years from the date the Lease was granted. When the term has reduced to around 75 years there is often a problem when you sell.

So, if purchasing where the Lease term is only around 75 years it is important to find out from the freeholder the cost of extending the Lease, usually by adding 99 years.

Often at least £10,000 and may be considerably more. Once extended, the value of your flat increases.

The Owen-Kenny Partnership have great experience in advising on buying and selling all types of property. Our advice is in plain English. We hope that we can be of service to you.

Please contact Michael Hall or Barbara Brown-Campbell (Bognor Regis 01243 864865) or Jannette Luker, Bernadette Kelly or Carol Laurence (Chichester 01243 532777).

Michael Hall - Solicitor

Owen Kenny Partnership Ltd