How Much Are Conveyancing Searches in Colchester?
When purchasing a property in Colchester, your conveyancer will be responsible for organising the necessary conveyancing searches that will provide you with further information about the home. Some of the searches include a Local Authority Search, an ENvironmental Search and a Water and Drainage Search. Depending on your conveyancer, these can sometimes be offered as a package deal, affecting the final price.
The Local Authority Search will be one of the main searches to be carried out as it is compulsory for those buying property using a mortgage. Your conveyancer will likely contact the local council to arrange this search. A Local Authority Search will include details concerning the local area, planning applications, enforcement activity and any charges on the property being sold. It will be split into two parts, the LLC1 form and the CON29 form.
According to the Colchester Borough Council website, the total cost for a full Local Authority Search including both parts is £154.92. You can request each section individually, however, with the LLC1 form costing £20.00 and the CON29R form costing £134.92. If you require any copies of the results, this will cost you an extra £20.00.
There is also the option of receiving additional enquiries from the CON29O form. For questions 4-21, the cost is £12.00 per enquiry, whilst question 22 costs £16.80. Any other enquiries your solicitor may request will be an extra £24.00.
£20.00 inc VAT
The LLC1 form shows you any information in the Local Land Charges register. It will find specific charges which apply to a piece of land. These include finance charges, planning charges, Tree Preservation Orders and Land Charges made due to a previous breach of planning rules on the site.
£134.92 inc VAT
The CON29R is an inquiry into the local authority to reveal any planning history or building regulations.
Full Search (Con29R and LLC1)
£154.92 inc VAT
This will contain both the Official compiled LLC1 report and the Official compiled CON29R.
What are the Flood Risks in Colchester?
Another search your conveyancer will organise is the Environmental Search which will include information concerning the risk of flooding in the local area. According to a government flood risk map for the UK, Colchester’s biggest concern for flooding-related issues come from the River Colne that passes through the town. Properties located within close proximity to the river have a greater than 3.3% chance of flooding each year. Streets such as Colne Bank Avenue and St Paul's Road are especially prone to flood alerts.
The map also indicates that Colchester is somewhat prone to flooding from surface water, meaning it’s vital you investigate the local drainage system around the property you’re purchasing. Most of the issues caused by this form of flooding are, again, connected to the River Colne and the properties around it. However, there are small pockets of areas that appear to be high risk despite being located closer to the town centre.
If you’re considering buying a house in the area, don’t underestimate the importance of hiring a trusted and experienced conveyancer. These conveyancing searches are essential to the buying process and will provide you with vital information to help you decide if the home is worth the investment. Don’t forget to compare conveyancing quotes to help save both time and money.
Are There Ground Stability Concerns in Colchester?
When the Environmental Search is being conducted, your conveyancer will also complete a ground stability search that should reveal any unstable ground surrounding the property. Examples of this could be the risk of subsidence, evidence of landslides or any other factors that could increase the risk of ground instability.
As shown on Geobear’s UK Subsidence Map, Colchester properties do not appear to have a high risk of subsidence. Despite its coastal location, there aren’t many areas highlighted as having previously recorded issues of subsidence. A dreaded term for many homeowners, subsidence occurs when the foundations of a building misalign, causing it to sink and crack. It’s an issue most prevalent in densely-packed areas such as London, as the added pressure on the ground weakens it immensely.
When purchasing a new home, the information you receive from the conveyancing searches can be invaluable. That is why it’s essential you work with a verified and trusted conveyancer to ensure they are carried out accurately and legally.
- Reveals instability issues from natural or man-made hazards.
- Highlights historic and current landfill sites.
- Identifies natural ground subsidence.
- Recognises historic tin, coal, clay and any other mining activity.
What are the Radon Gas Levels in Colchester?
As part of the Local Authority Search, your conveyancer will work with the local council to determine whether there are high levels of radon gas near the property you’re interested in. The CON29 form should contain the questions relating to this topic. The results will highlight if the home is located directly in a raised radon area or if there is a certain location surrounding it that is classed as such.
Radon gas is an odourless and colourless gas that is naturally emitted from the decaying uranium found in rocks and soils. Every home in the UK will experience some level of radon, but high emissions have been linked to serious health issues when exposed for long periods of time. Most areas will have average ratings which shouldn’t be too much of a concern. However, if the search results discover the area has high levels of emissions, it could become an issue for homeowners.
As you can see on the UK Radon Gas Map, Colchester does not contain elevated levels of radon gas. Most of the town has a maximum radon potential of less than 1% which is lower than the average rate. One area of land near West Bergholt has a slightly increased maximum radon potential of 1-3%, but again, this is not high and will likely not be cause for concern for homeowners in the area.
If your conveyancing search results highlight high levels of radon emissions, it’s advised you speak to your conveyancer for further information. They will be there to help and can advise you on whether the results should be worrisome.
Is Contaminated Land an Issue in Colchester?
Another important factor that will be highlighted during the conveyancing searches, is the presence of contaminated land. It’s important to be aware of any contamination near the property you’re interested in as there could potentially be hazardous substances or pollution that might pose a danger to you or the local environment. Examples of contaminated land include landfills, areas used for factories and land that was previously used for mining.
The Local Authority Search should uncover any evidence of contamination near the property and the land it’s situated on. Many areas throughout the UK will have some sort of history of contaminated land due to the rapid growth during the industrial revolution. The bay industry was especially prevalent in Colchester in the 18th century with a rise in trading cotton cloth and an increase in general manufacturing.
According to the Colchester Borough Council website, there are currently no recorded examples of contaminated land on their local register. However, they have created a Contaminated Land Strategy that will be put into place should evidence of contamination be found in the future.
Your conveyancer or conveyancing solicitor will be responsible for arranging the relevant searches that will highlight any risk of the property being located near contaminated land. If you have any questions or concerns, they should be able to explain the results and advise you on the next steps.