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Selling Concrete Houses

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Can I sell my concrete-built house?

Yes, you absolutely can sell it to Property Saviour.

In this article, we will cover why concrete built houses can be difficult to sell.

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What is a concrete house and why are they a struggle to sell?

Concrete houses, such as those built with a steel frame or cast on-site, are known as non-standard construction houses.

They differ from conventional brick or timber frame structures, and lenders deem them unfit for mortgages.

The concrete used in these homes can be susceptible to defects, resulting in structural issues. 

It’s easy to identify problems like subsidence, dampness or mould during a viewing. But, issues related to non-standard construction can be harder to spot.

Modern concrete or prefabricated buildings can appear flawless, but they can be more difficult to secure a mortgage or insurance for.

This can be especially true for those purchasing at auction, who may not have time to research the property before making a decision and only discover the problems later when trying to secure financing or find appropriate home insurance.

Demand for non-standard modern construction homes is usually limited as people are aware of the difficulties linked to them.

Precast reinforced concrete systems are made off-site and then assembled on-site while cast-in-situ concrete systems are poured on-site into a timber formwork known as shuttering.

Selling Concrete Houses
In a nutshell, non-standard construction is a technical way of saying that your home is one-of-a-kind.

What is non standard construction?

A property that is referred to as ‘non-standard construction’ (or non-traditional construction), means that the way it is built or the materials used are different from the usual ones used in house construction.

Materials such as timber, concrete, metal and glass should be watched out for. Additionally, building methods like panel assembly – houses built from prefabricated panels – or eco houses, which are sunk into the ground to ‘preserve the environment’, should be taken into account.

In a nutshell, non-standard construction is a technical way of saying that your home is one-of-a-kind.

It could be the result of an outdated building method, a particular heritage, or the use of building materials in an unconventional way.

This should not be seen as a disadvantage. While it could make it harder to sell and insure, properties of non-standard construction can be the most attractive – both for homeowners and investors.

Is non standard construction insurance hard to get?

Getting insurance for a house with non-standard construction is possible, although there may be a few challenges.

Securing coverage for a non-traditional home can be more complicated than a standard home, so it’s important to take a more specialised approach. Here are a few things you should consider:

  1. The number of insurers may be limited – Insurers take into account the risk involved, so not many of them are willing to insure a non-standard construction. These alternative methods often come with their own costs and repair needs, which require specialist attention and can be expensive.
  2. The insurance cost is likely to be higher – As non-standard constructions are a higher risk, insurance premiums are usually higher than average. Repairing this type of property needs specific knowledge and materials, which can be costly. With fewer options, some insurers might take advantage of this and charge more than normal.
  3. Your property may need to be inspected – As non-standard properties aren’t common, an insurer may only provide cover if the property passes an inspection. This is so they can be sure of the condition and market value of the property to minimise their potential losses.

Is there such thing as a non standard construction mortgage?

Yes, you can get a non-standard construction mortgage, but there are some things you should be aware of. Lenders will generally want a larger deposit, meaning a lower LTV. They may also charge a slightly higher interest rate, though this will depend on the provider.

So why is getting a mortgage on a non-traditional build more expensive? Here are three reasons:

  1. There are more associated costs, which may make it harder for you to make repayments.
  1. The market value of the property can be less stable, for example in the case of flats with cladding.
  1. If you default, it may be harder and slower for the lender to recoup their losses due to the property’s lack of saleability.
How to make concrete construction properties mortgageable
All types of concrete construction can be made more mortgageable with repair and reinforcement work.

How To make Concrete Homes Mortgageable?

It’s important to identify the type of construction of a potential property, as some are deemed safer than others. Booking a surveyor before exchanging contracts can help you determine any specific risks associated with the property and take action to correct them.

  1. Taylor Wimpey No Fines properties were built between the 40s and 70s, with short build times and better insulation due to the lack of sand or fine gravel. Unfortunately, they may not be as structurally sound as other concrete constructions, which can be problematic when applying for a mortgage. 
  2. Cornish units are the most common form of concrete construction, mainly found in Cornwall, and were constructed to house returning soldiers from WWII. Lenders may require these types of properties to have been refurbished under an approved scheme in order to extend a mortgage.
  3. Woolaway built a range of houses, such as bungalows, terraced homes and semi-detached houses, using concrete frames and panels for a faster construction process. Lenders may require a PRC certificate of completion to demonstrate that the property has been renovated.
  4. Reema constructions were erected using PRC panels and were popular with local councils in the 1940s to meet the demand for housing. Due to their age, they are likely to require renovation work to be mortgage-eligible. However, there are Reema properties from the 1960s that may not require such refurbishment.
  5. Hawksley constructions appear to be traditional brick houses but are actually built with PRC beams. Lenders are usually happy to accept these builds if they have been part of a PRC home repair scheme.

Other concrete construction types include Airey house constructions, Unity PRC homes, Dorran constructions, Orlit PRCs, Whitson Fairhurst PRC homes, and Wates Group PRC builds.

All types of concrete construction can be made more mortgageable with repair and reinforcement work.

This could include structural improvements, the removal of concrete pillars, blocks and support beams, as well as works to improve insulation.

In some cases, a brick ‘skin’ may be recommended to increase the visual appeal of the building and give lenders more confidence in the resale value.

How to sell a concrete construction house?

There are two primary ways to sell this type of property.

  1. You can go with a local Cash Buyer and bypass involving a mortgage company. At Property Saviour, we buy any house – even if it’s concrete construction.
  2. Alternatively, you can pay for reconstruction work, which entails removing the concrete panels and reverting the property back to brick. As long as there’s a PRC certificate, this will open up some possible mortgage lenders to help with the purchase. This is a big job and takes around 8 to 12 weeks, and won’t be habitable in that time.

If the foundations need reconstructing, the time frame increases, and the cost of materials and labour, plus new windows, could make this option prohibitively expensive for many people.

Most concrete construction properties are sold to cash buyers. This is a quick and simple option since there’s no mortgage lender involved.

Sell To Us!

We will buy any property in any condition.

We’ll buy your concrete home for cash, repair it and hope that neighbouring properties repair theirs, too.  Until they do, your property will remain unmortgageable.

If you are happy to sell without the hassle, get in touch with us today.

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  • The price we’ll offer is the price that you will receive with no hidden deductions.
  • Be careful with ‘cash buyers’ who require a valuation needed for a mortgage or bridging loan.
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  • No long exclusivity agreement to sign because we are the buyers.
  • You are welcome to use your own solicitor. 
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  • We share our solicitor’s details and issue a Memorandum of Sale. 
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