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To buy or not to buy…..a modern timber frame property?

Posted 25/11/2013

We thought we would talk a little about modern timber framed properties, which are often built with price in mind rather than the quality of the build. With housing in great demand, new developments are springing up all across the country and typically these timber framed properties can be built quickly and cheaply. However we are still unsure at this point in time of the problems that house owners may face with this type of construction in years to come. With this in mind we would like to tell you a bit about our recent survey on a modern timber frame property. 

We were called in to advise a client on the problems within a very recently built house, only two years old and still under the NHBC warranty, that he was considering purchasing. Our client felt a full Building survey was warranted as another house on this small development was already having problems and the NHBC had carried out repair work on the property.

During the course of the building survey it was obvious that there were numerous issues with the build including:-

  1. The property had been built on a sloping site meaning that any rainwater runs from the top of the site to the bottom of the site- with the house sitting in its path!
  2. The house was built on  pile foundations which were extremely deep indicating poor soil conditions.
  3. Moss on lower brickwork and mushrooms growing on the grass indicating that the ground was damp. We were advised that there was a water course or underground stream around the property. 
  4. A large soakaway with a pump was being used to take water away from the development, another indicator of water in the ground.

Unfortunately in this case and with the combination of issues we felt it best to advise our client not to purchase the property. 


If you would like to read more about modern timber frame structures or problems with the NHBC warranty please see our articles on our website.








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