Home » Should I Buy a House That’s Been Underpinned?

Should I Buy a House That’s Been Underpinned?

(September 23, 2023)

Subsidence is every homeowner’s worst nightmare. The last thing you want to do is complete a purchase of a new home only to find out that it is suffering from subsidence. However, a house that has been underpinned shouldn’t be treated in the same way as a house that is subsiding. In this article, we’ll be explaining what underpinning is and why it shouldn’t have a stigma attached to it. A subsiding house and an underpinned house are very different, with the major difference being that one is structurally sound, strong and stable, and the other is isn’t. Let’s discuss this further:

 

What is underpinning?

Underpinning is a service that’s carried out on a property that is experiencing subsidence problems. Underpinning methods will vary depending on who it is that’s doing the work. However, regardless of the method, subsidence issues will be rectified effectively, with long-lasting results. Underpinning can be done on even the largest of properties and residential or commercial buildings. Geobear is proud to use the resin injection method. This is a non-disruptive, innovative underpinning solution that involves injecting the ground with resin. The resin will be pushed along all of the voids that sit beneath the foundations, expanding and hardening as it goes. This stabilises and strengthens the ground and foundations, offering an unrivalled, long-lasting solution.

 

Does subsidence affect house value?

Yes. Any structural issue when it comes to property will cause the value of the house to drop. If you’re considering buying a property, then you should weigh up the risks against the cost. For example, if you’re the seller, think about whether selling for a knock-down price is worth it when priced up against the cost of underpinning solutions. Your home may drop in value by 20/30% because it’s suffering from subsidence, therefore, it would be financially beneficial to have the subsidence rectified.

There is always the risk that the prospective buyer will uncover the fact that you’ve had underpinning services carried out on your home, but underpinning solutions are designed, expertly, to last a lifetime. So if subsidence has been fixed, it shouldn’t affect your house value, and nor should buyers be put off by the fact that you’ve had your home underpinned, because the results are so effective and long-lasting.

 

What are the risks of buying a house that is subsiding?

Naturally, there are risks with buying a house that is subsiding, but that hasn’t had any underpinning solutions carried out. First and foremost, and something that we have already touched upon, a house that is subsiding will have lost value. As the buyer, you’ll subsequently be paying less for the same building, simply because its structural integrity is at risk. 

Although the thought of paying less for property seems attractive, it can be costly to have it rectified, especially if your insurance doesn’t cover subsidence issues. Therefore, the first risk of buying a house that is subsiding is the loss of a considerable amount of money, if you don’t have the right insurance in place. Another risk is that it could be unfit for habitation, meaning you’ll have to have the problem fixed before you can move in. 

Usually, if a house is found to be subsiding before the completion of a house sale, an agreement can be made whereby either the previous owners foot the bill for underpinning or you drop the price you’re willing to pay for it to cover the cost of underpinning solutions, on top of the original property valuation, which is likely to have already taken the subsidence problem into account. 

If the house you’re looking to buy hasn’t had subsidence issues confirmed, but if you’re worried about subsidence, then you can have a survey carried out that will either confirm or deny the presence of subsidence. Before committing to a purchase, you should consider the following things about a property if you’re wondering how likely subsidence is:

  • The age of the property
  • The type of soil the house has been built on (clay soil is a risk factor)
  • Whether or not the area is prone to flooding or drought

 

Should I buy a house if it has been underpinned?

As already discussed, underpinning is a highly effective method of rectifying issues of subsidence. There are multiple underpinning methods, all of which are equally capable of stabilising and strengthening both the foundations themselves and the ground that they sit on top of. If you have uncovered information that the house you are looking to buy has had underpinning work carried out on it, you should rest assured that the house has subsequently had it’s integrity and structural strength restored entirely. 

The injection-underpinning solutions carried out by Geobear are designed to permanently stabilise the soils beneath the property, meaning you won’t have to worry about future subsidence issues. Considering everything that has been discussed thus far, there shouldn’t be any reason why you shouldn’t carry on with your purchase. 

If you’re particularly worried, then it’s recommended that you call in the help of a subsidence specialist, such as us here at Geobear. We’ll be able to carry out an inspection of the property and report on any issues that might be present. This is a service we offer to give homeowners complete peace of mind. 

 

Geobear has a team of highly-trained, fully-qualified subsidence specialists who are dedicated to helping domestic and commercial property owners alike, regardless of the extent of your subsidence problem. Our underpinning solutions are proven to last a lifetime and so we can always be counted upon to restore strength and stability to your property. For further information about our subsidence services and underpinning solutions, get in touch with a member of our knowledgeable, professional team today – we will always endeavour to deliver exceptional results and sterling customer service.

Contact Us

Please use this contact form or navigate to the contact us page and send us a message. We will respond to you within 24hrs.

Alternatively please call us on 0800 084 3503 and speak to our customer services team. Calling from Ireland please go to the contact us page.

We deliver projects on any sort of building or structure – from conservatory extension problems to 80,000m2 warehouses and road infrastructure. In most cases we will have the best solution, so get in touch today.

Oops! We could not locate your form.