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Help Surveyor Undervaluing Property

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  • Help Surveyor Undervaluing Property

    Hi - hoping someone can offer advice. We are selling our house - we accepted an offer £20k below asking, and just 12% above what we paid for it 4 years ago. We thought we had been reasonable. The homebuyers report for our buyers is quite frankly shocking. The house is a victorian terrace - they have highlighted all the usual issues with an old house and made them seem like urgent disasters waiting to happen - they have suggested we have insect infestation despite not examining the area they say it is in - I was home when the survey was done - and have valued the property £15k below the offer we accepted. The mortgage is not at risk as our buyer is predominantly cash, however she is now trying to screw us into the ground - understandably. The surveyor was from the other end of the country and we cannot get access to his comparable properties apparently. We have spoken with a local surveyor who is coming to do a structural survey for us, he has told us that surveyors are now valuing properties at the value the lendors will get if the house is repossesed in 6-12 months, not the true value, due to enormous pressure from mortgage companies.

    All I see are complaints from buyers - but we are potentially going to be financially destroyed by this - we either sell with absolutely no equity and make nothing or get left with a house which is liable to be valued at less than we paid for it in 12 months time - how are surveyors able to get away with this and why do we seem to have 1. no recourse (this man could cost us tens of thousands of pounds) and 2. no access to the full survey or the properties he has used to get that valuation unless the buyer gives it to us - it affects us as much as it affects them. Please advise - I would love to see this surveyor in court - they are supposed to be independant but it appears they do infact work for the mortgage companies...

  • #2
    Without being able to comment on questions relating to the surveyors professionalism, I think it's highly unlikely that a property bought 4 years ago should be sold for just 12% above that price in today's market - unless it has suffered extensive disrepair over that period, or else was extensively over priced in the first place.

    In terms of valuing repossession price - I personally don't agree with this at all - so far as I'm aware, lenders already factor in a property's repossession value as 20% below sale value anyway. If surveyors are making valuations on this criteria, then it's the first I've heard of it.

    Overall, period properties are generally quite desirable, so if you feel that you're likely to get a bad deal in the current climate, then do you really need to sell the property?


    • #3
      Thanks Brian - having just discovered we are expecting twins yes we do need to sell - and we also need to make at least some money as we are shortly to lose a significant income.

      On the positive we have had a local surveyor come in to do a structural survey who first asked whether we had personal history with the surveyor as he could hardly believe the way the report had been worded and fortunately is providing a strong rebuttal to the report.

      He has agreed with most observations but disagreed with all his conclusions so we hope this will help. It has provided us with the confidence to go back to our buyer with a price we feel is fair and stick with it - if we lose this sale then fine at least we know where to start with the next!!


      • #4
        Good to hear - hope it all works out well for you, and best of luck with the twins!