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Property Q&A

Rhiannon Blackaby, Residential Property Solicitor at Harding Evans Solicitors in Newport answers your property questions.

Q: I have inherited a property and have discovered that there is Japanese Knotweed present in the garden. Will I ever be able to sell the house?

A: Yes. If you sell to a purchaser that does not require a mortgage then it will be their choice whether they want to proceed once they are aware of the Japanese Knotweed. If the buyer requires a mortgage it can be more difficult. There are a few mortgage companies that will lend against a property affected by Japanese Knotweed however they have a set list of criteria that needs to be met before they release the mortgage advance. Typically a mortgage lender will want evidence that a treatment plan is in place to eradicate the plant. It would be a good idea to contact a specialist horticultural company to attend the property and to get a treatment plan in place before you place the property on the market.

Q: A New Build development in my area has just started taking reservations, however the property will not be ready for 9 months, very few properties enter the market where I live and I don’t want to miss my chance to reserve as the new houses are selling fast.  What do I need to consider?

A:  The main point to consider is that most mortgage offers are only valid for 6 months. You will need to have a mortgage offer in place to exchange contracts to secure the property, most new home builders require you to exchange contracts within 28 days of reserving the plot and at this point you will pay a deposit of up to 10% of the property value to the developer. Once you have exchanged contracts you are legally bound to complete the purchase of the property. Therefore partway through the transaction your mortgage offer is going to expire and you will either have to obtain an extension from the lender or apply for a new mortgage offer. If you are applying for a new mortgage offer you may not be able to get the same interest rate as the original offer you obtained which could affect your ability to afford repayments.

Q: I want to sell my flat but I have been told that I need to obtain a pack from the Management Company, what is this pack and do I have to pay for it?

A: When selling a Leasehold property you will usually need to pay the Landlord – normally via the Management Company or Managing Agents – to provide the information required by your buyer and their lender. The pack usually contains a completed LPE1 Form which gives essential information about the property, details of the Service Charge and Ground Rent, Fire Risk Assessments and Asbestos Reports. Please be aware that in some cases two packs may need to be obtained if you pay your Service Charge and Ground Rent to different companies.

To ensure you are aware of any such costs you could instruct your conveyancer to review your lease before you market the property. Unfortunately there is no set fee for the pack and the individual companies have their own fee scales, however you should be expected to pay around £300.00.




Harding Evans has a wealth of experience in both commercial and residential property and we are supported by the latest case management systems and established processes to ensure that your move proceeds smoothly. If you have any questions regarding buying or selling a property or you’re looking for a conveyancing quote – please get in touch with one of our specialist solicitors today on 01633 235140.

*While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided above, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. Please seek legal advice for your individual case.

HardingEvans are a multi-disciplinary law firm with an award-winning residential property team who specialise in buying, selling and re-mortgages with fixed-fee rates and no hidden costs.



Please get in touch at: conveyancing@hevans.com, 01633 235140, 2 North Street, Newport, NP201TE