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Graham Awards


Conveyancers predict flood-checks will be mandatory during transactions

A poll of conveyancers suggests that the vast majority believe environmental searches to identify the risk of flooding will become standard for house purchases. 

A survey by a search provider suggests that 75 per cent of conveyancers now believe detailed checks on flood risks will become a default search prior to purchase. Only 11 per cent believe it will not, with the remaining 14 per cent unsure.

SearchFlow - the operator which commissioned the research - claims that since the most recent Christmas floods there has been a 10 per cent increase in flood reports commissioned by purchasers. 

A survey carried out by What Mortgage says 82 per cent of home buyers state they would definitely be deterred from buying a property if they were told that it was in a flood risk area; 16 per cent are unsure and only two per cent are apparently undeterred.

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    Then conveyancers have only themselves to blame, as these are matters for a surveyor to warn clients to do for themselves (or even do for the customer as who better than a surveyor) and mortgage lenders to satisfy themselves over before considering to lend.

    Lawyers are not surveyors / flood experts to offer any advice at all on the content.

    (Actually I am not sold on these search results anyway myself; to do a flood search because you know it is in an area of flooding to be told it is in an area of flooding. Daft. And they carry no guarantees, nor actual 'yes or no this property has or will flood'.

    Ask neighbours, and get an insurance quote - then you will soon learn, and visit http://maps.environment-agency.gov.uk/wiyby/wiybyController?x=357683.0&y=355134.0&scale=1&layerGroups=default&ep=map&textonly=off&lang=_e&topic=floodmap

    Madness to associate lawyers with such searches.

    Instead, search companies are peddling more and more searches to lawyers who are a soft target, to buy the searches. Conveyancers get themselves worried that they better be doing them in case others are.

    More and more daft searches are on their way as a result - 'when was the cat flat last oiled' searches won't be far off.


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