What is a conveyancing search flood risk report?

Fri 25 Jul 2014 by Lorraine Imhoff

Written by Lorraine Imhoff

The risk of flooding has now become a major problem for property owners.

Apart from actual damage that may be suffered when a home is flooded, it can now be difficult or impossible to obtain insurance cover against flood damage on properties in areas considered to be at high risk.

If insurance cover cannot be obtained, or only obtained on payment of high premiums, this will affect the value of a property. It will become difficult to get a mortgage on such a home, further reducing its value.

It is therefore important for anyone buying a home to make sure that it is not going to be at risk from flooding.

This can apply to flats as well as houses, since even if a flat is not on the ground floor, the whole building can be severely damaged by flooding.

One in six properties at risk from flooding!

The Environment Agency estimates that one in six properties in England and Wales (approximately 5.2m properties) are at risk from flooding. 

The problem for buyers is that it is not always be easy to determine if a particular property is at risk. A home does not need to be close to a river or the sea or on low lying ground to be exposed to flood risk. Surface water, groundwater and overflowing sewers are increasingly common causes of flooding.

While a quick online search can give some indication, a more detailed flood risk report can be obtained which will show if a property is an area which is at risk, and the likely cause of any flooding, such as a river, the sea or a reservoir.

Your Conveyancing Solicitor will recommend an additional Flood Risk Search if the Environmental Search reveals that the property is situated on a flood plain, or if there is any other suggestion that the home is at risk.  The additional cost is nominal and, needless to say, well worth while.


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