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Nic Seal speaks at Grand Designs Live about Japanese knotweed

Environet will be speaking at Grand Designs Live. 

The exhibition is held at the ExCeL in London, which spin off from the famous TV programme presented by Kevin McCloud. This show is helping to raise awareness of Japanese knotweed. On Friday 8th May at 2.30pm in the Grand Theatre I’m presenting to the audience as part of a talk called "What's your home worth - and how to add value". With knotweed, of course, it's more a damage limitation exercise to minimise value reduction as the presence of knotweed on a property clearly does not "add value". But by tackling the knotweed correctly with the right treatment programme, and providing insurance backed guarantees that are acceptable to lenders, the value need not be affected too much.

Surveyors, valuers, buyers, estate agents and solicitors all have their opinions on knotweed, and these range from one extreme to another. We have a case in Swansea where an estate agent told his client that her property was worth half (50%) of what it should be, due to the presence of knotweed! 

What a load of twaddle! 

Environet - Japanese knotweed Emotional Rescue 

We came to his client's rescue, have started treatment backed by one of our 10 year insurance backed guarantees underwritten at Lloyd's. A cash offer is now on the table at only 6% below the original asking price, saving the client a massive £30k. The cost of treatment and the guarantee represents about 10% of the property value, not 50% as advised by the agent.  

A large country estate with knotweed covering an area equivalent to 37 tennis courts went up for sale last year, and the owner refused to accept that the knotweed had any effect on value. The fact that the property (and the area affected by knotweed) was to be redeveloped meant that the cost of knotweed removal had a very significant effect on the value. It didn't even sell at auction, because of the knotweed!

The message we want to convey is that knotweed is a serious problem on any land, but even more so on land that is to be developed. It clearly does have an effect on value typically equal to the cost of true eradication plus perhaps a few percentage points for the uncertainty, the hassle and disruption. I think they call that "diminution" in value.

It’s true in some extreme circumstances that knotweed can have a very significant impact on value, for the majority of cases on residential property Japanese knotweed can be removed or eradicated for a relatively modest cost, that might represent up to 5-10% of the property value. 

You can limit the diminution in value caused by Japanese knotweed by ensuring you get the right specialist, using the optimum method and providing the best insurance backed guarantee available.

I hope some of you will have the time to visit Grand Designs Live on Friday 8th May. I look forward to seeing you there.  

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