If you’re thinking about selling your home, do yourself a favour and don’t buy a house that has had Japanese knotweed problems on it without doing your due diligence first.
This invasive weed can be dangerous to your health and your home’s foundation. If you don’t take the time to inspect your potential home thoroughly before putting it on the market, you may end up with a home that won’t sell or be worth the asking price.
If you’re looking for a new home, but are concerned about the presence of Japanese knotweed problems in the area, then this article is for you. We’ll explore what happens when you buy a house that has had Japanese knotweed problems before and offer tips on how to avoid being affected by it yourself.
Japanese knotweed can be devastating to your property’s value and health if not dealt with immediately. It spreads through underground rhizomes and shoots up above ground quickly as well, so it can do major damage before anyone notices.
Japanese knotweed problems
Here are a few reasons why Japanese knotweed problems are so problematic and what you can do to avoid them when selling a property with it.
One reason that Japanese knotweed is such a deal-breaker is that it’s a common problem. It shows up everywhere from the southern United States to New Zealand and is especially prevalent in the UK.
It has spread into more areas, as people have started to grow it in their backyards without realizing the dangers it poses.
In the case of the UK, Japanese knotweed problems have even gotten so bad that in some areas, the government has had to reintroduce regulations in an effort to halt the spread of the weed.
When you deal with a real estate agent who isn’t familiar with this type of property, you run the risk of letting a potential buyer down when they mention it.
Another reason why it can be such a deal-breaker is that it can destroy the foundation of a house. It can be so invasive that without intervention, your home could crumble. Even when your foundation is protected, it will be vulnerable to wind and rain.
That’s because when Japanese knotweed begins to grow, it starts at the top. Because it has spread so quickly and broadly, it has already reached much of the soil in your backyard before it has a chance to weaken and break down any structure or settle on the foundation.
One final reason why it can be such a deal-breaker for you when buying a property with Japanese knotweed problems is the cost. The costs of treating the property will be expensive, and because there is not a very strong control over the spread of the weeds, the costs are likely to keep on going up.
Prohibitive costs of buying a property with Japanese knotweed problems
When you add that to the already high costs of treating a property, it’s easy to see why it’s considered a deal-breaker. On top of that, you run the risk of having the property foreclosed upon when the knotweeds aren’t being treated.
If you have no choice but to deal with Japanese knotweeds when selling your home, then you need to focus on getting rid of them as soon as possible. The fastest and easiest way to eradicate them is with a herbicide.
Before you do anything else, however, you should check with your local planning office for recommendations on the best type of herbicide to use for your particular situation. Some herbicides are safe to use on your own, and others require that you apply them by hand or spray them directly on the weeds.
If you’re going with a herbicide that’s available from a retail agent, you’ll probably want to choose one that’s readily available at your local garden store.
There are some herbs that are invasive enough to warrant using a different type of herbicide than one that’s sold over the counter. When you choose a specific herbicide to use for your property, don’t expect the weed to just die and vanish.
That would just mean the end of your garden. Instead, get the herbicide to kill the plant so it won’t grow back. You can also use a commercial herbicide for this kind of situation, which is designed to be more concentrated than the sorts available for your home.
Once the herbicide is applied properly, the knotweeds should be killed within a few days to a week. However, even if they stay dead, you should take care not to pull them up.
You should instead carefully remove the dead plant from the soil, as well as any other plants or bushes that were affected by the weed.
Many lenders will not finance properties that have such a problem. In fact, you may even find that you’ve declined a loan in order to purchase the property back from these lenders.
Of course, you can take steps to eradicate any knotweed in your garden before you actually attempt to get rid of it. The best advice is to pull any weeds in the garden, even the ones that aren’t fatal, and to do this in the late summer or early autumn.
This will ensure that no problems arise with your property in the meantime. You should also try to keep on top of the weed problem by using a weed barrier, a type of membrane that will be effective against Japanese knotweed problems, along with other garden products.
Want to know more about how to remove Japanese Knotweed problems?
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