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Location Guides

Location, location, location. Where you want to buy a property can have an enormous impact on property prices. Read our expert guides to find out more about buying a home in desirable local cities, including Peterborough and Cambridge. We also look at important considerations when buying property, including the complications of purchasing in a conservation or flood-risk area.

Posted On: January 26, 2022

Buying A House In Flood Risk Area UK – 5 Things You Should Know

Cited as one of the questions you should ask before putting in an offer on a property, if you’ve found the dream property that happens to be in a flood risk area, we’re revealing the top 5 things you should know in order to make a decision on whether to follow through with a purchase or keep on searching.

How to check if a property is in a flood risk area?

The house seller should be honest about whether the property is at risk of flooding if you ask them during a viewing. But, if you are in any doubt, you can always check the property’s flood risk on the government website. Simply, enter the postcode and you’ll be given a grade from ‘high’ to ‘very low’. Flood maps can change, so you can’t necessarily solely rely on this check. But it is still a good indicator. You can also ask your local estate agent and check online news articles for any mentions of flooding in the area you want to move to.

Where is more likely to flood?

Flooding tends to occur in areas that are close to water, such as rivers and the sea. Properties that are on lower land are also more susceptible to flooding. You could find a property in a riverside town that’s liable to flooding, but if the house is situated on higher ground it may not be at risk.

Top 5 thing you should know about buying a house in a flood risk area:

It may impact insurance prices

As you might expect, insurance premiums will be more expensive for properties in flood risk hotspots. Some insurers may request you get a formal letter from the Environment Agency confirming the flood risk level associated with the property.

You may be in a better position to negotiate the price

You may have higher insurance premiums, but you may also be in a better position to negotiate the asking price if you know that the property is at a higher risk of flooding.

Get to know the level of damage from previous flooding

It can be helpful to get to know the level of damage incurred from previous flooding episodes, including how expensive the repairs were. This can help you decide whether to follow through with the purchase. To find out this information, you will need to speak to the house seller.

Research flood defences

Some local authorities receive funding for flood defences which help minimise the risk of flooding in built-up areas. For instance, demountable defences are in place for a number of towns along the River Severn. Choosing a home in a town that has flood defences in place doesn’t mean the property will never flood, but it does mean that the risk is substantially reduced.

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