The Impact of Major Defects on Property Value Insights from Irish Building Surveys

When purchasing a home in Ireland, understanding the potential impact of major defects is crucial. These defects can significantly affect a property’s value, safety, and overall livability. In this blog, we will explore common major defects found in Irish homes, how they impact property value, and provide insights from professional building surveys.

Common Major Defects in Irish Homes

1. Structural Issues

  1. Foundation Problems: Cracks, sinking, or shifting foundations can compromise a building’s stability.
  2. Wall Cracks: Large or numerous cracks in walls can indicate serious structural concerns.

2. Damp and Mould

  1. Rising Damp: Moisture rising from the ground can damage walls and floors.
  2. Penetrating Damp: Water ingress through walls, roofs, or windows can lead to extensive interior damage and health issues.

3. Roof Defects

  1. Leaking Roofs: Damaged or missing tiles, and poor flashing can lead to water damage.
  2. Sagging Roofs: A sagging roof may indicate structural weaknesses or decay.

4. Electrical Issues

  1. Outdated Wiring: Old or faulty wiring can be a fire hazard.
  2. Insufficient Outlets: A lack of adequate electrical outlets can indicate an outdated electrical system.

5. Plumbing Problems

  1. Leaking Pipes: Can cause water damage and mould growth.
  2. Poor Water Pressure: Indicates potential issues with the plumbing system or supply lines.

Impact on Property Value

Major defects can have a significant impact on a property’s market value for several reasons:

  1. Repair Costs: The need for extensive repairs can reduce the property’s market price. Buyers often deduct the estimated repair costs from their offer.
  2. Marketability: Properties with major defects are less attractive to potential buyers, reducing demand and, consequently, market value.
  3. Safety Concerns: Defects that compromise safety, such as structural or electrical issues, can further deter buyers.
  4. Insurance Issues: Properties with significant defects may face higher insurance premiums or difficulty obtaining coverage.

Insights from Irish Building Surveys

Professional building surveys in Ireland provide critical insights into the condition of a property. Surveyors identify major defects and assess their severity and potential impact on property value. Here are some key insights from these surveys:

  • Early Detection: Surveys help detect issues early, allowing for timely repairs and maintenance.
  • Negotiation Power: Detailed survey reports provide buyers with the information needed to negotiate purchase prices or request repairs.
  • Informed Decisions: Comprehensive surveys enable buyers to make informed decisions, avoiding costly surprises after purchase.


Q: How much does a building survey cost in Ireland?
A: The cost of a building survey typically ranges from €300 to €1,000, depending on the type and size of the property.

Q: Can I negotiate the price based on the survey results?
A: Yes, survey results can provide leverage for negotiating a lower purchase price or requesting repairs before the sale is finalized.

Q: How often should I have a building survey conducted?
A: It’s recommended to have a building survey done when purchasing a property and periodically for regular maintenance, especially for older homes.

Q: What should I do if major defects are found?
A: If major defects are found, consider obtaining repair estimates, renegotiating the purchase price, or in some cases, reconsidering the purchase.


Major defects identified in building surveys can significantly impact the value of a property in Ireland. Understanding these defects and their implications helps buyers make informed decisions, ensuring they invest in a safe and sound home. Professional building surveys are an essential tool in this process, providing detailed insights and aiding in negotiations.

Are you planning to buy a home in Ireland? Ensure your investment is protected with a comprehensive building survey from iSurv Chartered Building Surveyors. Our expert surveyors provide detailed assessments, highlighting potential defects and their impact on property value. Contact us today to schedule your survey and make your home-buying journey a confident and informed one.

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