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How Much Does Subsidence Devalue a Property?

Has your property been damaged by subsidence? It’s a pretty scary thought; your mind might immediately race to what it may cost you to repair the damage, and let me tell you, it’s usually not cheap. Subsidence strikes fear into property owners, but it also is a big turn off for any potential buyers if you are looking to sell.

Subsidence isn’t the be all and end all though, people will still purchase properties with issues that are manageable. It does make selling your property harder, as most standard buyers on the open market require a mortgage, and lenders often stray away from difficult property so you often have to go with a cash buyer which limits the audience some what.

In this article we’ll go through

What Is Subsidence?

The process of subsidence is when the ground that supports the foundation of your house sinks, when the foundations drop in certain parts, the house built on top drops with it. When the ground sinks at different rates across the foundations it can cause further issues with increased damage to the property.

What Causes Subsidence?

The ground doesn’t just sink randomly after a property being on it for 10+ years right? Well not necessarily. There are quite a few different things that can cause a property to suffer from subsidence but here are a few of the most common ones:

  1. Tree roots
  2. Perhaps one of the most common and significant causes of subsidence is tree roots. Some don’t even recognise this as a potential issue, if you have a large tree near your house, the roots of the tree constantly try to find and extract moisture from the surrounding area, growing out as much as they need to do so in order to find it.
  3. Clay Soil
  4. If you’re house is built on clay soil then it can be problematic, moisture stays locked inside the soil for several years and when the clay eventually starts to dry out it will shrink, or expand if it moistens again. This can obviously cause the ground to move dependant on the conditions.
  5. Man-made Issues
  6. Damaged drains, old mining area, traffic vibrations, poorly prepared ground or foundations can all be an eventual cause of subsidence.

How to spot subsidence

Sometimes spotting subsidence can be tricky, you might only be able to tell once it is fully established. Here are the main ways in which you can spot the first signs of subsidence:

  • If the doors and windows are starting to stick, and are a bit of a struggle to open
  • The floors are starting to slope
  • If large cracks start appearing in your walls which is typically around door or window frames and are at least 3mm in width
  • An extension can also show you some common signs, look for any cracks where it meets the main property

If you see a small crack line in your ceiling or wall, chances are most of the time it’s just the paint & it’s through the temperature changes in the room causing the paint to shrink and expand, eventually causing small cracks. This is nothing to worry about, just paint over it!

How you can sell a property with subsidence

We touched on this a little bit earlier in the article, but if you have subsidence then it’s unlikely that a mortgage buyer will be able to purchase your property as it will come up in the lenders report and they typically won’t lend money on a property with this issue. This means that your pool of buyers who will purchase your home is limited, here are the options you may have:

  • Investors
  • Property Developers
  • Cash Home Buyers (Like ourselves)
  • People looking to downsize

How much can you expect subsidence to devalue your property

Unforutnately there is no real way of answering this question, a lot of people ask it, but it depends on numerous factors which include the extent of the damage and even the area that you live in, believe it or not. It’s also made harder because cash buyers are obviously aware that they are taking a risk in buying your property, so the price will be reflective of that risk.

It may be cheaper to fix the issue prior to bringing your property to market, although this will obviously involve a decent amount of funds so isn’t always feasible. Even once the property has been restored to it’s former glory you may have to declare that it has previously been subject to subsidence that may put a few buyers off or result in lower offers.

How we can help

We’ll buy any property, in any condition, which includes if it has subsidence. Our offer will be reflective of the conditions, however we are cash buyers and can buy your property in as little as 7 days, we’ll even cover your solicitors fees along the way & help handling everything throughout the process for you.

Getting a quote from ourselves on your property is completely free and we’ll provide you with an initial figure in under 24 hours.

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