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Property Problems Quick Guide


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When you have a property problem, it’s important to find the source of the problem and then make sure you engage professionals to fix it.
Don’t forget, whatever your property problem is there is usually a way to fix it, you just need to know who and how.
Identify what the actual property problem is. For example it might be you are in negative equity, but the problem is you need to sell your home and buy a new one. 
  Check what guarantees you have. For example timber and damp companies usually give a guaranteed period their work will last for. 
  If the person/company has done work for you and you think there is a problem which is their fault, put this in writing, and make sure you have a record of them receiving your complaint. 
  If a complaint is not resolved to your satisfaction, use their third party
complaints procedure. 
  Work out who is the best person to deal with the problem. For example your purchase/sale might not be progressing; most chase the agent when it’s likely to be a problem for your solicitor/legal company.
If the problem is property related, for example a leak, your insurance company may cover the cost and organise the work. Check your policy and call your insurance company. 
Make sure you get someone who is properly qualified to sort the problem out. For example a builder may be able to fix a damp problem, but you will need a surveyor to correctly identify what is causing the damp problem.
For work on your home, only use qualified tradespeople and companies who have the right qualifications, belong to a trade organisation and have some form of third party complaints procedure.
Be wary of anyone that comes to your door claiming there is a problem with your property which needs fixing and offering to fix it ‘for cash’.


All our information is brought to you by Kate Faulkner OBE, author of Which? Property books and one of the UK's top property experts.
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