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Removal of chimney breasts: Structural issues

The Home Condition Survey tells you about structural issues. The chimney breast in this Victorian semi-detached house, located in East London, was removed from the ground floor some time ago. No evidence of structural support was visible underneath the remaining part of the chimney breast and the ceiling at this point, within the room below, was cracked [...]

2019-08-27T18:35:30+00:00 August 27th, 2019|

Pitched fibre underground drains: Whats the problem?

  Pitch fibre was a material widely used in the 1960's to construct underground drain pipework. Its serviceable lifespan is only expected to last 40 years and it is prone to sudden failure and no longer used.  Any drain pipes made of pitch fibre should be replaced as soon as possible. Further advice may be obtained [...]

2019-08-27T09:58:57+00:00 August 27th, 2019|

Japanese Knotweed: What’s the big problem?

The purchaser of this London flat was glad i spotted this plant in the next door neighbours rear garden! Japanese Knotweed is an invasive plant species. It grows rapidly, sometimes by as much as 1.5m in height a month, and spreads easily by stem fragments and rhizomes, underground root systems. The root system of a [...]

2019-08-27T09:49:49+00:00 August 27th, 2019|

Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES)

From April 2016, The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property)(England and Wales) Regulations 2015 will bring into force minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) in the residential and commercial private rented sector. Essentially Landlords with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) Rating below an E will be required to undertake work to improve the energy performance of the [...]

2017-10-27T10:26:38+00:00 October 27th, 2017|

Green Deal Finance Company relaunches loan scheme for home energy efficiency improvements

The GDFC has officially started issuing loans again under the new owners led by Killian Pender who states: “We are extremely pleased to announce the relaunch of the Green Deal scheme and Green Deal loans. Since acquiring the business in January, we have received a very significant amount of support from government, energy efficient focused [...]

2017-10-27T10:27:46+00:00 August 23rd, 2017|

Major report urges banks to lend more to properties with higher EPC ratings

The Government funded report by The Lending Group has been looking at innovative ways to encourage the public to make energy efficiency improvements to their homes and at making these homes more attractive to buyers. The report suggests that homebuyers could take out bigger mortgages on those properties that have a higher EPC rating. This [...]

2017-10-27T10:28:29+00:00 July 28th, 2017|

Have you ever found bats in a roof space and do you know who should be informed if you find them?

Bats are a protected species under the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations (2010) and cannot be disturbed. If owners want to carry out any building works which might disturb any resident bats they would need permission from Natural England. Grey squirrels may also be found in roof spaces, particularly where surrounding trees give them [...]

2017-10-27T10:30:25+00:00 June 20th, 2017|

Japanese Knotweed

Some encouraging recent research has come to light about a project to introduce certain insects that weaken Japanese Knotweed. These tiny insects (psyllid) have been released into parts of the UK and do not appear to have any adverse affects on native species. More information is available about the project here: http://www.cabi.org/projects/project/32999 There has been [...]

2017-10-27T10:31:32+00:00 June 1st, 2017|