Thinking of buying a Period Property or Protected Structure?
Old buildings and Protected Structures can be irreparably damaged and have their special character swept away, by the misguided actions of new purchasers. Mistakes usually come about because of ignorance, and the fault may be laid at the feet of professional advisers, builders, owners, or all three.
Importance of Professional Guidance
It is important that your Surveyor has specialist knowledge and experience in relation to Protected Structures.
You must ask whether they are experienced in this area.
Problems of liability mean that a surveyor is likely to draw attention to every single apparent defect. It is important to remember that by no means all the points raised in a Surveyor's Report will be a cause for concern or will require immediate action.
Protected or Period Buildings simply do not need to be brought up to modern standards with modern techniques, they require sensitive care and repair that is informed by the material and construction techniques originally used, with modern skills carefully employed where appropriate.
The Building Survey Report should be useful for the buyer, and not simply a document with the main intention of protecting the surveyor. What you do not want to receive is a 25-page report by a surveyor who keeps recommending 'further investigation' or specialist reports by additional Third Parties.
An initial Protected Structure Survey is essential when contemplating purchase and could draw your attention to defects that you didn't know existed or the seriousness of which you may not have appreciated. It will advise which aspects of the structure are typical to its age and should be retained, rather than stripped and “upgraded” with unsuitable modern methods and materials.
undertake Pre-Purchase Surveys of both Residential and Commercial Protected Structures throughout Dublin and the surrounding counties (See detail below).
More than any other building type, the Protected Structure requires the input of a professional with Protected Structure and Historic Building Expertise at this early stage.
provide a service for specialist Surveys, Reports and Advice when buying a Protected Structure. Our surveys cover the whole of the building structure and its site and aim to tell you how the building is constructed and what maintenance; repair and conservation provisions may need to be made.
Maintenance of your Protected Structure is not just essential, it is a legal requirement. The survey will reveal it's current state of repair and the extent of any remedial work required.
The whole of the building will be protected including its interior, exterior, and everything within the site including boundary walls. If the building was protected with more recent alterations or additions, even uPVC windows, they will be included too.
Alterations to a Protected Structure cannot be made without Planning Approval or a Declaration of Exemption from the local Planning Authority.
Alterations and repairs to a Protected Structure will inevitably cost more. Often it can be very difficult or impossible to undertake thermal performance upgrades such as external insulation or dry-lining. Any upgrade measures have to be carefully considered against their impact on the building’s fabric.
A full understanding of a Protected Structure is essential to ensure it's successful conservation. A detailed survey prepared by a Conservation Architect gives you this knowledge and allows you to make an informed decision prior to purchase.
If you require a Valuation of your Protected Structure we can advise you of suitable Valuation Surveyors in your area who undertake this work.
MESH Architects undertake Pre-Purchase Surveys of both Residential and Commercial Protected Structures throughout Dublin City and County Dublin,
surrounding Counties Including: Meath, Louth, Kildare, Wicklow.
We also consider surveys in other areas depending on the property.