Selling your house suffering with subsidence

When homeowners have a house that’s suffering from subsidence, they might be worried that it’ll be impossible to sell the property. Perhaps they fear that the damage will discourage potential buyers, or perhaps they think that it’ll cost an impossibly large amount of money to treat the problem before they can sell their home and that will prevent a sale.

But the good news is you can still sell a house with subsidence, regardless of whether you decide to invest in treatment or sell the property “as is” without fixing the damage.

Whichever option you decide on will depend on a host of factors, so it’s vital for you to be informed before selling. The below guide should help you with the steps involved in selling such a property, including the various options you have available for selling.

Should I treat my house with subsidence before selling it?

The answer to this question comes primarily down to two key factors: time and cost.

Subsidence happens when the ground below your home starts to shift, and this can be due to a number of factors both man-made (such as nearby energy drilling) or natural (unwanted build-up of water). Whatever the cause, it can lead to damage to the house ranging from minor cracks through to significant structural problems, and it will eventually need to be treated.

The process for fixing subsidence is known as underpinning and can be performed by licensed contractors. They will excavate the area where the subsidence is occurring then stabilise the ground with concrete or by installing pipes or beams to reinforce the house.

Underpinning can be a lengthy and expensive process and as a result, if you are eager to sell your house in a hurry, you might not be able to spare the time involved in seeing through the treatment to completion.

Similarly, if your top priority with selling is maximising your profit, you likely won’t want to spend any money on treating the subsidence. Or if you lack the funds for the treatment, this will not be a viable option before trying to sell your house.

Options for selling your house suffering from subsidence

One way to sell your house, even if it’s suffering from subsidence, is to contact an estate agent. If you are deciding to sell without treating the problem, you will likely have to accept a lower price than you would achieve if the subsidence was fixed. A benefit of selling this way is that the estate agent will take care of the marketing and viewings for you.

Downsides from selling this way include the time taken, because there’s no guarantee of when your house might sell. Some properties sold through estate agents can stay on the market for months or even years, so if you would like to sell quickly, this isn’t a great choice.

Additionally you’re also not guaranteed to receive the sale price for which your home is listed, because a buyer may wish to negotiate a lower final purchase price.

Auctioning is another option for selling your house, even if you don’t treat the subsidence. An auctioneer will list the details of the property (including the subsidence) and work to generate interest from prospective buyers. They will also give you a date for auctioning your home, so you’ll have a guaranteed sale date, which can be vital for people looking to sell by a certain date.

A big risk of the auction route is that of the final sale value. Auctioneers will typically set the opening minimum reserve bid at a low level to generate suitable interest and to encourage competitive bidding that can enhance the final sale price. But there’s no promise that anyone will bid higher than the reserve price, so you may have to settle for that value. If maximising your profit is your top priority, there may be better options.

A great option for selling your house with subsidence is to contact a reputable property buying company. These businesses, such as LDN Properties, which has been buying houses across London for 15+ years, have the ability to make homeowners quick and competitive offers on their houses without charging any fees. Many will be happy to chat about making an offer on a home with subsidence even if you don’t want to repair it.

It is important to Weigh your options up carefully when deciding which route for selling is best for your individual circumstances, however rest assured that it is feasible to sell your house suffering from subsidence.

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