How does Japanese Knotweed affect mortgages?
All mortgage providers now refuse to lend on property that has Japanese knotweed present. Some of the biggest even refuse to loan if it is spotted on neighbouring land. This effectively makes a non-cash sale impossible until the knotweed is eradicated.
The presence of Japanese knotweed will most likely affect the valuation of your property. Mortgage lenders often require evidence of a suitable treatment programme as a condition of lending if Japanese knotweed is present on or near to a property. A 10 Year Insurance Backed Guarantee must also be in place upon completion.
Japanese Knotweed affects a lot of building structures, including drains and other drainage places, patios, paths and driveways, retaining and load-baring walls, conservatories and outbuildings like sheds, greenhouses and garages.
Did you also know that you can also be sued if the Knotweed spresds into your neighbours gardens and causes problems with the buildings? It's essential that you don't let this happen if you want to stay out of the courtrooms!
You don’t need to inform your insurer if you have Japanese knotweed unless they ask you. However, you are obliged to do all that you to prevent any further damage to your home.
Every lender will handle each case differently depending on their own guidelines. Check out this Telegraph article on mortgage lenders and knotweed.
The attitude of mortgage providers to the presence of knotweed has been changing over the past few years. Previously, any hint of knotweed would see a mortgage refused but most lenders – particularly the big High Street banks – have now adopted a more measured approach. There are still some smaller lenders and quite a few mortgage advisors who will default to a refusal but if you shop around you should be able to find a less hostile response. As long as the knotweed is at a distance of 7m or more from your house, you should have no cause to worry.
Loan providers can really spoil your dreams of purchasing a home if they find ‘Japanese knotweed’ on the surveyor’s report.
At a minimum, they will ask for a professional removal plan that can cost up to £3,000. Experts are forced to deliver a guarantee against the return of knotweed before an offer is made.
Lenders will handle cases of Japanese knotweed differently according to their particular guidelines. Every lender is different.