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Issues to consider when researching a property for development

Open Property Group is a family business with over 30 years of buying, selling, and developing properties.

One of our Directors, Jason Harris Cohen, has put together some things to consider if you are thinking of buying a property for development:

Are there any restrictive covenants on the title preventing development?

What are the ground conditions, you will need to get a soil survey even if a basic one

How do you access the site and do you have right of way? If not, what is proposed?

When does the planning consent expire?

How do you get services to the site, where is the gas and electric run? You might need to get the mains supplier out and this can be a very significant cost.

Check for any ransom strips

Is there an overage on the site by the developers?

What is the section 106 liability and is there any CIL - community infrastructure levy?

What are the drainage provisions, where is the nearest connection?

What are the conditions of the planning consent? There could be some big hurdles.
(Also, a measured land survey – to make sure you can build within site/legal boundaries).

I would add to the list below that you should also consider any potential rights to light that might be interfered with as a result of development.

Is the property in a Conservation Area or Area of Special Local Character? And what are the local authorities’ special requirements for development in these areas?

Protected trees in the garden? How close to existing house and proposal and how will this affect foundation depths and foundation types- piling, ground beams and pads etc.

Proximity of neighbouring properties and likeliness of party wall.

Asbestos present? If so what type and will it need removal? Check roofs, soffits. Survey usually required to satisfy HSE.

Telegraph poles and wires or by boxes- will they be impacted by new proposal?

Any public sewers running through the site?

Any rights of way passing through the site?

Ecology- is the proposal close to woodland and will the works impact a property that bats may use during hibernation.

Badgers, slow worms and other protected species.

Is site within a flood plain? If so what type? Check Environmental Agency maps.

We hope you find this list useful.

Open Property Group purchase all types of land with development potential. We welcome enquiries from land owners and agents who want to sell land quickly.

If you think a development project is too big for you or it is a cash purchase because of issues like the ones listed above and you want to cash in, please get in touch with us today.

We are happy to pay finders fees for any successful introduction too!

Published on 12th January 2016

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