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Costing for New Roof and Timbers for Property in Conservation Area

Postby Charlie7000 » Wed Jan 07, 2015 9:34 am

This is our second attempt to buy a house having pulled out of one that was in a flood risk zone. We've now found one that isn't in a flood risk zone, are at our maximum budget with the purchase price, and know it needs a new roof (it is dipping in places). It's in a conservation area and has a stone slate roof, so will need the same again. However, now we've had a survey done, the surveyor said the whole roof needs to come off, timbers and all and be replaced. It is very old, had some strengthening in the past, but on the verge of collapse due to longstanding and current woodworm. This has thrown us a bit with regard to costings.

I asked a roofer to quote for it and when he saw the location he said he didn't want the job. The house fronts onto a one car width back road, and he says it means scaffolding blocking the road, permission and fees to council etc. Surveyor says it needs additional scaffolding to go over the top of the house for when the whole roof (timbers and all come off). The back backs onto someone else's garden so although we have right of access there, it could incur costs if scaffolding messes up part of their garden.

We don't want to pull out but need to get a good idea of costs involved and try and negotiate on the price. The surveyor estimated £10,000 plus Vat, but an architect I spoke to said it could be at least £30,000. Estate agents won't negotiate without a firm quote. We asked the surveyor for a roofer recommendation and they recommended a big company who specialises in whole new roofs. They said £10,000 was about right until they heard it was a stone roof and in a conservation area, then got a bit vague.

Just wondered if anyone could give some advice on how to go about this to get a firm quote. Architect said, get a specification done then put it out to tender - but this could take some time and is the kind of thing you do after buying the house. Right now we need a firm quote on costings to be able to negotiate, plus it would mean another £350 survey from the architect and the cost of a specification drawn up before even starting negotiations.

Would it be better to get two quotes (one from a joiner, one from a roofer) or go with someone who can do the whole job? Also, we do have a few tons of stone slates removed from an old barn, so have some materials, although they would need cutting to size. The house is a two bedroomed terraced cottage - at least 200 to 300 years old. Floor area is approximately 504 square feet (about 24 feet wide including wall widths and 21 feet deep including wall widths).

It seems it is taking the roof off, providing protection and access that could make the job more expensive and difficult, but also we have no idea how much having whole new roof truss timbers would cost or what kind. We are assuming we have to replace like with like (externally) due to the conservation area, but we don't think the cottage is listed.

We know just replacing the roof slates would cost between £5,000 and £8,000 from previous quotes, so £10,000 does sound too low for all the scaffolding and roof trusses. Should we allow £30,000 or could it be more? We are thinking of negotiating based on it costing £30,000 but if it ends up being more we are in a mess!
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