property survey

Serious Problems found during Home Surveys

Believe it or not, over seven million home buyers choose to not bother with a professional property survey. As a result, they find themselves with nasty shocks later on. So, what are the most serious problems found during home surveys?

Structural movement

Subsidence and heave will indicate movement in the foundations of a property. Subsidence will occur on buildings that have been built on clay soil. In fact, the majority of subsidence cases are the direct result of nearby tree roots taking up too much moisture. Alternatively, it could be down to drainage leaks washing away the soil from beneath the building. Heave is the opposite problem as it pushes the building upward when the soil beneath begins to swell.

The surveyor you hire will look out for cracks in brickwork or plasterwork, as well as sticky doors and windows from misaligned frames. Combating the problem usually means underpinning the foundations. This can be quite a costly job.

Damp Problems

Damp can be a common issue, but it can also come with serious consequences. Condensation and mould may appear, creating a dangerous living environment. And the more you have to put up with it, the more you are at risk to respiratory diseases such as chest infections or asthma.

A professional surveyor will use a damp meter reader to detect the level of damp in the walls. They will also assess the damp proofing in the building. Once the damp is detected, it can be easy to treat early on. If you leave it, however, the reparation costs are high.

Japanese Knotweed

This invasive plant spreads like wildfire, growing at approximately 10 cm per day. It can penetrate the walls and concrete of your home, affecting the foundations of your building, blocking drains and potentially flooding your home. Getting rid of it isn’t easy, and you must contact your local authority to find out the safest way to dispose of it.


Signs of woodworm include:

  • Tiny holes in woodwork
  • Crumbling sections
  • Signs of beetles in the timber

Woodworm is actually caused by beetles and can pose quite a danger to the woodwork in the property. The damage could be so bad that you may need to replace sections of timber. This could be quite costly, which is why a surveyor is recommended for finding the problem before it’s too late.

Rat Infestation

Everyone knows that rats carry diseases and can spread harmful bacteria. They can also transfer fleas, ticks and mites onto both pets and humans! This is something you really don’t want to realise too late, so having a surveyor spot the problem before you decide on a property can be a lifesaver!

Find the perfect home with Joules Estate Agents

Before you can even think about surveying a property, you need to find one! Luckily, Joules Estate Agents is here to help. We cover all four areas of the Heaton’s, and even expand to the likes of Didsbury! Get in touch so that we can find you the perfect home.