Asbestos Survey For First Time Buyers
First introduced in the UK in the mid-1980s, asbestos prohibition laws banned the import and use of blue and brown asbestos, also known as crocidolite and amosite asbestos. The use of asbestos was later fully banned in 1999.
What does this mean for property owners? First, it means that if your home was built in the 1980s or earlier, there is a good chance that your property has the presence of asbestos. Landlords are often advised to consider it likely that any home built pre-2000 contains asbestos.
For those prospective residential home buyers, both of the RICS surveys, Level 3: Building Survey and Level 2: HomeBuyer Report, will flag any signs of asbestos within the property. However, you will need a specialist survey to confirm the amount and locations. The specialist survey will physically test the materials that have drawn suspicion, whereas a surveyor from RICS will not test anything during the visit.
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a naturally occurring material, fibrous in texture, that was a very commonly utilised material in the building industry, included in products such as cement, floor tiles and even roofing shingles. The key property of asbestos was its increased durability and resistance to heat.
The hazardous element of asbestos begins with the microscopic nature of the tiny fibres that form its makeup and the strength of these fibres that are easily inhaled and can cause life-threatening diseases and illnesses, some of which take many years before they show their symptoms. Asbestos is also easily disturbed, which thrusts the particles and fibres into the air and is then easily inhaled.
There are six different types of asbestos:
Will there be asbestos in my new home?
An enormous amount of asbestos was used in the UK construction industry pre-1999. This means that there is a very real possibility of coming across asbestos in any home built before this time; in fact, contrasting figures recently showed that between 50-70% of homes in Britain contain some form of asbestos.
Is it a legal requirement to get an asbestos survey when purchasing a property?
It is not a legal requirement to have an asbestos survey undertaken when purchasing a property. However, there are plenty of reasons to do so. These surveys offer you more peace of mind that your purchase will not reveal unforeseen issues down the line, particularly if you have plans to conduct any building or extension work on the property. It also gives you confidence that nobody in the household will be at risk of disturbing the harmful material. Overall, it’s very helpful to know everything you can about a property before committing to such a large purchase.
The material can be found in a wide variety of places around the home, and nearly 30% of asbestos is found in Artex ceilings of a home. Additionally, boiler flue pipes, floor tiles, garage roofs and outbuildings are also common areas to find asbestos in the residential setting.
Contact Fibre Safe Today For Asbestos Survey
As always, the best way to get accurate information specific to you and your building is to seek help from true industry experts like Fibre Safe. You can contact us online or by calling us on 0800 458 4136. For Commercial Asbestos Management Surveys, Click Here. For Domestic Asbestos Management Surveys, Click Here.