What is Japanese Knotweed?
Posted on 16 February 2018 by Siân Merriott
Japanese Knotweed was introduced to Britain by the Victorians who thought it would be a pretty addition to the herbaceous border, however, the plant can destroy foundations and crack buildings, destroying homes and re-sale values. It is number 1 on the Environment Agency’s list of the UKs most invasive plant species. Its root system can extend up to 3 metres in depth and 7 metres in all directions. It is responsible for £170 million worth of home repairs every year.
A couple in Cornwall who purchased their property 15 years ago have won a landmark legal case against their neighbour claiming their home has lost £50,000 in value because of her Japanese knotweed. The neighbour has been ordered to employ contractors over the next five years to eradicate the weed, as well as pay court costs. Legal experts say home owners must now stop the weed spreading or face the prospect of being sued.
Buyers of new build properties are at risk of their homes becoming subject to Japanese Knotweed because of a “Legal Loophole”. Homeowners selling their property must fill out Form TA6, a property information form, declaring whether the property or garden is,
or has been, affected by Japanese Knotweed. However, developers and builders are not obliged to complete form TA6, meaning some purchasers are buying properties infested with Japanese Knotweed.
In one case a family were advised to demolish their £300,000 home as the only solution to kill the Japanese Knotweed.
Posted in: Buying & Selling Your Home