What Happens If I Want to Mortgage a Property with a Japanese Knotweed Infestation?

Invasive plant species can cause no end of trouble, impacting your property valuation and potentially your mortgage offer. As highly experienced brokers, the Revolution guide explains what you should do if you have Japanese Knotweed on your property and why it can be such a big deal.

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Based on your yearly income, you may be able to borrow:


Most lenders will let you borrow 4.5 times your annual salary so, as long as you have a standard 10% deposit, you should be able to borrow this much.


Depending on your personal circumstances, some lenders may let you borrow 5 times your salary.


Lenders usually cap the amount they lend at 5.5 times your salary, so it’s unlikely you’ll be able to borrow more than this.

This calculator is an estimation of how much you could borrow. If you’re ready to take out a mortgage, speak to a Revolution brokers to see what options are available.

What Happens If I Want to Mortgage a Property with a Japanese Knotweed Infestation?

Japanese knotweed is a plant that looks a little like bamboo and can cause tremendous damage to properties. It grows extremely fast, and there are laws about destroying plants before they intrude on neighbouring properties.

If you want to purchase a property with Japanese knotweed, you may find that high street banks will automatically reject the application due to the perceived risk.

However, there are usually borrowing options available through a whole-of-market broker! Give mortgage brokers a call on 0330 304 3040 for help with any queries we haven't answered within this article or to progress your mortgage application.

Why Does Japanese Knotweed Impact My Mortgage Application?

The problem with this plant is that it grows and spreads so quickly the roots can block drains and damage foundations. This can, in turn, devalue the property and make a mortgage a higher risk for a lender who might struggle to recoup their cash in a repossession scenario.

You will need to have a survey to identify how severe the knotweed infestation is and whether there is a real risk to the property. Lenders will then take their own view on whether they can lend - and the policies vary substantially between mortgage providers.

That assessment process usually places your application into one of four risk assessment categories:

  • There is no knotweed on the property, but it is present next door or within seven metres.
  • Neighbours have a knotweed infestation, which is closer than seven metres of the boundary.
  • The property has an infestation, but it is over seven metres from the home.
  • Knotweed is present and within seven metres of the property or has already caused substantial damage.

This risk assessment is pivotal to your chances of mortgage approval. The below table shows how most general lenders will treat each level:

Risk level one - knotweed not on the property and over seven metres away.

Lower risk - a mortgage is still possible without any specific terms.

Risk level two - knotweed not on the property but within seven metres.

Medium risk - lenders will want the valuation to consider the presence of knotweed nearby.

Risk level three - knotweed is on the property but over seven metres from the living space.

Higher risk - a specialist survey is likely to be required before a mortgage provider will agree to lend.

Risk level four - knotweed is on the property and within seven metres of living spaces or already causing damage.

High risk - repair works may be required out before a lender will approve a mortgage. They may offer to lend, but with a retention schedule.

What Can I Do If My Mortgage Application Has Been Rejected Due to Japanese Knotweed?

There are always options:

  • Contract a specialist to remove the knotweed.
  • Implement a lower-cost treatment plan over the long-term to contain the plant.
  • Contact a broker for professional guidance following The Property Care Association's ruling that knotweed should be treated as any other type of property issue per the Invasive Weed Control Group 2012.

These same restrictions usually apply to buy to let investments and residential mortgages, with similar policies from lenders in either situation.

Are Commercial Mortgages Available Where Japanese Knotweed is Present?

As with home loans, commercial mortgages where knotweed is an issue depend on the lender's attitude, but there is usually a viable solution.

Like a residential mortgage, the lender will want to know how severe the risk is and base their decisions on that assessment.

Expert Advice With Mortgaging Homes With Japanese Knotweed

Knotweed is a pest and can be structurally damaging, but with the right advice and management plans, it is usually possible to find a competitive mortgage.

In some cases, Revolution Brokers can negotiate terms with the lender to mitigate their concern and agree on treatment plans that avoid the knotweed escalating and causing damage to the property. This strategy can reduce the lender's risk factor and ensure they are comfortable lending.

For more advice and help finding your mortgage lender, contact Revolution on 0330 304 3040 or drop us a message at info@revolutionbrokers.co.uk.

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FCA disclaimer

The content included in our articles, blogs, web pages and news publications is based on information accurate at the time of writing. Note that policies and criteria can change regularly throughout the UK mortgage lending market, and it remains essential to contact the consultation team to receive up to date guidance. The information included on the Revolution Brokers site is not bespoke to any circumstances or individual application scenarios and therefore is not intended to be used as financial advice. The content we share is designed to be informative and helpful but cannot be relied upon to provide individual advice relevant to your mortgage requirements. All Revolution team members are fully qualified, trained and experienced to provide mortgage advice of an independent nature. We collaborate with lenders and providers who are regulated, authorised and registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Should you require specific mortgage borrowing types, some products such as buy to let mortgages may not be FCA regulated. The Revolution team can provide further information about regulated and unregulated lending as required. Please remember that a mortgage is a debt which is secured against your home or property. Your home can be at risk of repossession if you do not keep up with the repayments or encounter any other difficulties in managing your mortgage borrowing responsibly. This also applies to any remortgage or home loan secured against your property, including equity release products.

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