Homeowners are being warned of the dangers posed to buildings by bamboo infestations.
Invasive plant removal firm Environet claims unmanaged bamboo can spread even further and faster than Japanese knotweed, causing damage to property and legal disputes between neighbours.
Research it carried out earlier this year with YouGov revealed 8% of homes in the UK are currently directly affected by bamboo and a further 3% adjoining an affected property. It means unless they deal with the problem, 11% of homeowners run the risk of bamboo derailing their property sale.
It also found 28% of respondents said they would be worried to discover bamboo on a property after they moved in, with the main concerns being its invasive nature (73%), the cost of removal (69%) and the risk of damage to property (57%).
Unlike Japanese knotweed, there is no legal requirement for a seller to declare the presence of bamboo on a property when they sell, buyers are taking matters into their own hands and requesting professional surveys to assess the risk of damage to property or encroachment to neighbouring homes.
Environet has released a case study of a homebuyer who agreed a purchase on the basis that the seller would pay for removal of the bamboo.
Sheldon Bosley Knight’s lettings manager Claire Paginton said: “When people talk of invasive plants it tends to be Japanese Knotweed but bamboo can be just as bad. Any homeowner should be vigilant as the damage these plants can cause can be considerable and costly to rectify.
“We would urge landlords in particular to talk to their tenants and if the tenants are concerned there is a problem in the outside space or nearby to inform the landlords immediately.
“If it is found to be present, they should instruct professionals to get rid of it.
“If anyone is looking to buy a property and are concerned about the presence of bamboo – or indeed Japanese Knotweed – we would advise they speak to their surveyor. If it is found on site, we advise they try and renegotiate the cost of removal off the sale price.”