So you’re thinking of buying a listed property?

If you’re considering buying a listed property then below are some of the most common questions that people have as well as answers to help you make the right decision.

What is a listed property?

A listed property is one that’s considered to be of architectural or historic importance or interest and as a result is on the national register. People who own listed properties are expected to keep them in good repair and do what’s necessary to help the building maintain its character. People who own listed properties are part of The Listed Property Owners Club and receive a listed building guide when they join. The listed building guide is regularly updated and includes useful briefings about how listed buildings are defined.

Can alterations be made to listed properties?

If one of the first thoughts on your mind is how you’ll be able to alter or extend your new property, then it’s probably not a good idea to buy one that’s listed. Whilst it’s certainly possible that you may be able to alter or extend certain parts of the building, it’s certainly not something you can take for granted.

When you buy a listed property, you’ll be assigned a “Conservation Officer”. The conservation officer is who’ll decide whether you’re allowed to make changes and to what extent. When you own a listed property, the officer will play a very important role in your life so it’s a good idea to develop a good relationship with them from the start.

What things should I look out for before I buy?

The most important thing to look out for when purchasing a listed property is an unauthorised work by the previous owner. As the current owner, you will be held responsible for any work that was carried out that wasn’t approved by the conservation officer. This may seem unfair but it’s just the way it works.

Are there any grants available?

Unfortunately there are very few grants available now for listed properties. You will be able to find out if there are any grants available for your particular property by speaking to the conservation officer.

What is the insurance like for a listed building?

Purchasing insurance for a listed property is quite different from buying regular home insurance for a couple of key reasons. Firstly, the fact that the building may have had unauthorised work carried out on it that you’d be responsible for means the risk is higher. Secondly, the fact that listed buildings are usually required to be rebuilt with the same materials and construction methods means the rebuild costs are often much higher

When looking for insurance for a listed property, it’s highly recommended that you go to a specialist provider. Specialist providers will have experience in dealing with listed properties and all the intricacies that go along with it. You can get quotes from a panel of specialist listed property insurance providers by clicking here.

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