Property professionals, such as surveyors, solicitors, builders or architects, are not immune from getting things wrong but when they do it can result in financial loss or damage. Property negligence can cover a variety of issues such as the failure to advise properly on the necessary planning and building regulations, over-valuing the property, incorrect architectural drawings, and surveys not identifying defects in the property.
When you are buying a property, surveyors and conveyancing solicitors play a vital role. A surveyor’s expertise and knowledge are relied upon, not only for valuations but also for other decisions relating directly to a specific property. If a surveyor’s valuation is more than 10-15% above or below the identified correct value, then they are likely to be found negligent. Most claims against conveyancing solicitors relate to their failure to investigate sufficiently the title and matters affecting that property.
If you decide to extend your home or even build a new one, it’s likely that you’ll need the services of an architect and a builder. Architects’ negligence usually relates to the drawing of plans, applications for planning permission or the design of a new build property or extension. If the architect also acts as a project manager or overseas a building team, they may fail in their duty to manage the project properly, causing mistakes and financial loss.
When employing builders, their work must be safe and comply with building regulations and other set standards. So claims usually relate to work that does not meet these requirements, failing to complete the job within a reasonable amount of time or failing to carry out the required works at a reasonable cost.
If you have suffered financial loss or damage as a result of a property professional’s negligence, it's important to make sure you seek specialist legal advice to determine your legal rights.