Stop – read this: Homebuyers Plus, an enhanced version of this Homebuyers report is now available. Based on Land Registry polygons, with new features, improved layout, intuitive design and clearer navigation, Homebuyers Plus saves time and improves workflow for conveyancers. Click here for more information.

Homebuyers is used by solicitors, and is accepted by all major UK lenders to ensure maximum due diligence for residential property purchases.

Groundsure Homebuyers reviews flood, contaminated land and ground stability risks to provide comprehensive due diligence for a residential property.


Why this report?

The original combined environmental search:

  • Environmental

  • Flood

  • Ground stability

  • Energy alert

  • Historical Land  Use Database – 7000+ land use classifications

  • databases for tanks, energy features and  military installations

Flood and environmental risk assessments

Groundsure’s Historical Land Use Database dates back to the 1840s and features highly detailed information for an accurate overview of the site’s history. The maps are scanned in at over 500dpi – setting a new industry standard. Clear imagery is essential when reviewing historical maps as a slight misreading of ‘bank’ or ‘tank’ could make all the difference to your client’s purchase.

The flood risk assessment details all sources of flooding including groundwater and surface water risk. It also reviews historical flood events and proposed  flood defence schemes within the vicinity of the property to provide your clients with a full overview of risk and gives a view on insurance availability and the possibility  of the property being ceded into Flood Re.

Additional alerts

The Homebuyers now includes an enhanced energy alert detailing specific energy infrastructure categories within 5km of the property.
This alert includes existing and proposed: oil and gas sites including fracking; power stations including nuclear; wind power projects; solar farms and major energy infrastructure projects.

The report highlights potential and planned energy installations within the vicinity of the property and features a number of alerts highlighting the London Underground, Docklands Light Railway, active railways, HS2 and the Crossrail 1 project – alerts that won’t feature in any other residential search report.

What else is covered?

  • Environmental Permits, Incidents and Registers
  • Active and historical landfill data from authoritative sources, including the Environment AgencyNatural Resources Wales, British Geological Survey (BGS), Local Authorities and historical Ordnance Survey mapping
  • Current industrial site data
  • Potentially infilled land
  • Historic military and ordnance sites
  • Designated environmentally sensitive sites including Green Belt, Local Nature Reserves and National Parks
  • Ground stability assessment including non-coal mining and subsidence risks
  • Coal mining screening
  • Ofcom mobile phone mast locations & planning applications relating to phone masts
  • Detailed radon potential data
  • JBA Insurability Index & Flood Re statement
  • Energy alert highlighting existing or planned energy installations, such as wind turbines or fracking sites. Giving clients clearer information on risk therefore allowing them to decide if  they want further searches.


When you want certainty, you need Groundsure.


* Reliance: £10m Professional Indemnity Insurance (any one claim). Can be relied upon by all professional parties within a property transaction, first purchasers/tenants and their advisers. Please refer to Groundsure terms & conditions.

What is radon?

Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas, produced by the radioactive decay of Uranium (238U). Uranium is found in small quantities in all soils and rocks throughout the UK. It is not possible to see or smell radon and specialist equipment is required to detect it. Click here for more information about radon

What is natural ground subsidence?

Natural ground subsidence refers to the upward, lateral or downward movement of the ground that can be caused by a range of natural geological hazards, such movements are typically in the order of centimetres, but exceptional circumstances can be larger. Significant natural ground instability has the potential to cause subsidence damage to some weaker buildings and structures. Click here for more information about subsidence

What does 'Passed/Acceptable Environmental Risk' mean?

Groundsure provide a statement regarding the likely designation of the property under Part 2A of EPA 1990 and the level of risk associated with the property represents either ‘Acceptable Environmental Risk’ or ‘In Need of Further Assessment’ ‘Acceptable Environmental Risk’ or ‘Passed’ indicates that there is an unlikely risk of statutory (Part 2A EPA 1990) or third party action being taken against the site and the potential environmental risks associated with the property are not considered significant

What does 'In Need of Further Assessment' mean?

In Need of Further Assessment does not necessarily mean that the site is unsuitable for purchase, but only that further assessment of the risk associated with the site is required. When a site is ‘In Need of Further Assessment’ then the practitioner may, if required, discuss the case with one of the Groundsure Consultants.

More information and video guides

What information do you accept to ‘Pass’ a report?

Groundsure are able to reassess a report together with additional information provided by you. Normally this will be undertaken free of charge. However Groundsure reserve the right to charge in the event that the time taken to review the documents provided is greater than normal, due to either the number of documents provided or the complexity of the case. When sufficient information is provided, Groundsure will revise the report from "In Need of Further Assessment" to a "Pass" (Acceptable Environmental Risk). Where appropriate, Groundsure provide recommendations for further action that helps you to obtain sufficient information:

  • NHBC Buildmark Certificate with contaminated land cover. All policies registered after 2007 should include contaminated land cover;
  • Confirmation that contaminated land planning conditions were imposed on the site and were subsequently discharged by the local planning authority;
  • Confirmation from the Contaminated Land Officer or similar at the Local Authority that they are aware of the previous use of the site and are not considering any further action against the study site or any surrounding sites (either informally or formally) under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 .

CON29 Local Authority Searches

The CON29, Section 3.12 of The Local Authority Search is an identification of land that has already been designated as “contaminated land” under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. This doesn’t provide an indication if a site is on the local authority’s Contaminated Land Inspection Strategy or if it is likely to be designated.