The property market can be a confusing place at the best of times. What can I buy for my budget? Which area? What is the average pound per square foot in a postcode? How fast is the market moving? The list of questions can be endless…..
But one question which is becoming more prominent, in a market place where the pressure on the government is to produce more and more new houses across the UK, is no doubt, ‘should I consider a conversion of a period property or a newly built property?’
At Aspire, we don’t feel that it needs to be one or the other. In fact, you can have most of the benefits of a newly built home that has been created by a reputable developer whilst retaining all of the benefits and the reasons your preference may be a converted period property. Let me explain….
The quality of fit and finish has improved year on year meaning that developers recognise that buyers in today’s market have an eye for detail and quality. There are no cutting corners or scrimping on material quality as customers have become more demanding and only quality will sell. The result, converted period properties with the fit and finish either equalling or beating new purpose built developments.
But what about warranties? Sure, many new build buyers will have assurance that their home is protected by a 10 year NHBC certificate or equivalent but what about newly converted properties? Until fairly recently, there was little requirement to provide specific warranties on newly converted flats aside from the obvious building regulations and planning consents. That has now changed. The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) have now set out a requirement to ensure that all newly converted properties provide a ‘PCC’ (Professional Consultant’s Certificate.) The purpose of the PCC is to confirm to the lender (or its conveyancer) that a professional consultant:
- has visited the property to check its progress of construction, its conformity with drawings approved under building regulations and its conformity with drawings/instructions issued under the building contract;
- will remain liable to the first purchasers and their lender and subsequent purchasers and lenders for the period of 6 years from the date of the certificate;
- has appropriate experience in the design and/or monitoring of the construction and conversion of residential buildings; and
- will keep a certain level of professional indemnity insurance in force to cover his liabilities under the certificate.
The net result is that, you as a buyer know that the property you are purchasing has been finished to a standard high enough that a 3rd party is willing to put their name and liability to the final product. Simply put, no PCC – no lending and therefore, no doubt a property to avoid.
At Aspire, we specialise in working with local, well-renowned builders and developers to ensure that we really are able to offer our valued customers the best of both worlds.