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Home Buyers Drainage Survey

20th December 2016

Home Buyers Drainage Survey

Out of sight, out of mind. That’s the way most of us tend to think of our drainage, unless it causes problems: but then it’s all we can think about as we try to manage it and resolve the issues. There are times though when having the forethought to consider the drainage of a property before any problems start is very worthwhile and one such time is when you are buying or selling a home.

The average house price in Oxfordshire in 2016 is £325,398, with detached properties selling for an average of £547,030. Based on those house values, a standard Home Buyers report or a Building Survey could range between £600 and £1,300. Already the cost of surveying and buying a home is on the expensive side, but it is so important to check the drains and our price for a CCTV survey starts at £180+VAT. You will receive a DVD of the footage we have captured in your drains and an extensive report detailing any problems spotted, along with recommendations on how to resolve any issues. Given that substantial work to repair drainage can run into the thousands, it is well worth finding out beforehand if this might be the case for your future property as you could possibly negotiate a reduction in the price of the purchase in light of this information.


What Might We Find?


There are a great many reasons why drains block or become damaged, and a CCTV survey can find them all.

  • Tree roots: Having a garden with trees for shade in the summer is a treat, but they are living plants and therefore have thirsty roots. Drains are a great source of underground water and roots are persistent. If they come across a displaced joint or a small crack that’s all it takes and they can weed their way inside where they will populate and grow, eventually creating a mass which causes blockages. In extreme cases this can break the pipe to the point where the only option going forward is to excavate and replace the pipework.
  • Illegal Connections: If your property was built after the 1920s it should have been installed with separate sewerage system in line with current legislation. This ensures that plain rainwater (surface water) will head straight for local rivers, while the waste water (foul water) heads for a sewerage treatment plant. Any confusion with regarding this drainage can cause pollution in our wild water sources, which is clearly bad for the environment. More importantly the responsibility of making certain that the connections are correct and legal falls to the current owner, even if the installation happened under the previous owners’ watch.
  • For more information, check out the Connect Right Campaign
  • New Build Properties: Drainage problems are not merely the forte of older buildings; it is not uncommon to find that recently built houses have some problems with their drains. As drainage must be installed while other building works are ongoing this can mean that building materials can find their way into the drains, which can often be time consuming and disruptive if an excavation has to be performed to remove any debris. The benefit of a New Build Home however is that some aspects of the drainage should be covered by a 5-10 year guarantee.

What Are the Benefits?


  • Most of our surveys take 2 hours to complete All of our drainage engineers are fully trained as well as DBS checked
  • The starting price of £180+VAT includes the cost of using High Pressure Water Jetting to enable visibility
  • A CCTV survey is non-intrusive and for most homes take less than 2 hours to complete
  • You will receive a detailed report, which our office is always happy to discuss with you should you have any further questions
  • As a buyer you can feel assured that the drainage isn’t going to present a problem for your lovely new home, or if there is a problem you can have it rectified before exchanging contracts.
  • As a seller you will have a DVD of the footage and a report to prove that your drainage is in tip top condition, which can help enable a smooth sale


Remember: drainage can be out of sight, out of mind, but a Home Buyers Survey allows for peace of mind when buying or selling a property.

For more information give us a call on 01869 277702 or email [email protected]

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We are always happy to arrange a free site assessment and no obligation quotations for any work you might need. Alternatively, you can call our emergency hotline number on 0800 66 88 00

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