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Local search firm reveals hidden property risks in the South West

Local property search firm, X-Press Legal Services Bristol, Bath and Somerset has revealed the risks that you should look out for when buying a property in the Southwest.

Before a buyer commits to buying a property by exchanging contracts, they need to know as much as possible about it- especially anything that may affect its future value or their enjoyment of it.

Property searches are enquiries made on a buyer’s behalf by a solicitor or conveyancer to various authorities that hold information about a property, the land it sits on or factors that may directly (or indirectly) effect it.

John Watt, owner of X-Press Legal Services Bristol, Bath and Somerset, said: “Along with the common property search risks such as flooding, contamination and planning- each region of the UK has its own particular search risk given the geology and industrial history of the area.

“Over our 15 years of providing search reports, we have a pretty good idea of the risks our region is most likely to reveal. Our team then supports local conveyancers to deliver a complete picture of not only the property, but the area surrounding it.”

A risk factor specific to the Southwest is mining.

John aded: “An unusual property search unique to our region is that of Bath Stone- the famous building material that you can see throughout the crescents and much of the architecture of the city.

“Obtained from mines throughout the local area, including near Combe Down and Bathampton Down, the stone gives our city its distinctive image, but it also puts properties across the region at risk of ground stability issues and subsidence caused by its mining. The mines are in a dangerous state and are currently being filled in under the instruction of the Land Stabilisation Programme.”

The Mendip Hills are also famed for their system of caves and underground rivers. These are interesting attractions for outdoor adventurers, but if you’re building a property in the area you may need to watch out for issues with ground stability.

In the UK last year, over £400 million was wasted on failed property transactions in England and Wales. For the consumer, this could mean one in three people losing a significant amount of money in failed attempts to buy or sell their home, and for some- this could put an end to their residential sale or purchase for good.

John said: “It is important to remember that you may have found the perfect property, but that the location can have hidden risks. We have an in-depth understanding of the risks present in our region associated with property transactions, and we put that knowledge to good use with our conveyancing clients- protecting consumers buying or selling a property.”

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