Environmental Risk For Investors – Phase 1 Desktop Survey

Paul Downing

We all know that the property and construction sectors are booming right now – right!!

Well contrary to popular belief there is still activity within the commercial sector and a steady stream of investors and developers who think that this is just the right time to invest in the purchase of land or property in the belief that the market is somewhere at or near the bottom and things can only go one way from here.

A lot of the proprietary environmental search products and phase 1 desktop surveys on the market used by solicitors are conservative by nature and always identify the potential for risk via the traditional source/pathway/receptor model especially when looking at the potential for contaminated land risk. These products are understandably cautious when making judgements about risk and this comes about from the fact that little in the way of investigative work is done on the ground by actually speaking to neighbours, architects, councils or by actually visiting the site. A full phase 1 desktop study should always include a site visit and walkover.

If you are looking to purchase land or property it is always best to get a real person to do the phase 1 desktop risk assessment based on factual evidence and by speaking to the parties concerned along with the usual searches, you will then be in a position to make an informed decision about the investment and if necessary re-negotiate costs with the vendor to reflect the quantified risk.

For more information on what is involved on a phase 1 desktop survey click here.

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