Buying a House with a Borehole: Benefits, Considerations, and Costs

Thinking of buying a house in a rural area? You might encounter properties with a pre-existing water borehole, offering a chance to tap into your own private water supply. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you understand the advantages, potential considerations, and associated costs of a borehole, empowering you to make an informed decision:

Benefits of a Borehole:

Reduced Water Bills: Boreholes can significantly lower your water bills compared to relying solely on the mains supply.

Improved Water Quality: Borehole water can sometimes be of higher quality than mains water, depending on your location and geology.

Enhanced Water Pressure: Boreholes can address issues of low water pressure commonly faced in older or rural homes.

Increased Self-Sufficiency: Having a private water source provides greater independence from the public water system.


Considerations When Buying a House with a Borehole:

While boreholes offer numerous advantages, there are essential factors to keep in mind:

Registration: Ensure the borehole is registered with the British Geological Society (BGS) to confirm its legality. The registration details should include depth, geology, water yield, and casing information. You can check the registration status using the BGS GeoIndex online tool.

Borehole Condition: Investigate the borehole’s condition. Unused boreholes can accumulate silt, potentially damaging pumps and equipment. Consider a camera survey to assess the interior and potentially an airlift cleaning service if necessary.

Distribution System Maintenance: Similar to other household systems, a borehole’s distribution system requires regular upkeep. This includes annual servicing, checking the UV steriliser bulb’s expiry date (typically replaced annually), and inspecting filter condition. If unsure about the last service, a full system service is recommended to ensure safe operation.

Water Testing: For domestic use, water testing is recommended every two years. If the borehole hasn’t been tested recently, conducting a test is crucial to verify water safety, as the water chemistry may have changed over time.

Water Treatments: Borehole water can sometimes contain contaminants like iron or manganese. Ensure any treatment systems are present, functioning correctly, and programmed for self-cleaning. These systems might require refilling with salt, similar to a dishwasher.

Permits: Boreholes exceeding 20,000 litres daily usage require an abstraction licence. While domestic boreholes likely won’t need one, verify the absence of existing licences or the need for one in the future. Contact the Environment Agency (EA), Natural Resources Wales (NRW), or the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) depending on your location, if a licence is required for your anticipated water usage.


Potential Costs to Consider:

Professional Survey: Having a professional assess the borehole’s condition and water quality can help identify any potential issues and avoid future repair costs.

Annual Servicing: Regular maintenance of the borehole and distribution system is essential for safe and efficient operation. Factor in the cost of annual servicing to maintain your borehole’s functionality.

Water Treatment Systems: If your water requires treatment for contaminants, you’ll need to factor in the cost of maintaining or replacing the treatment system.


Making an Informed Decision:

Buying a house with a borehole presents a unique opportunity to access a potentially high-quality, self-sufficient water source. However, a professional assessment can help identify any potential issues and ensure the borehole is safe and cost-effective in the long run.

Our team of experts at Dragon Drilling is here to assist you. We can answer your specific questions and guide you through the process of ensuring your new home’s borehole provides a safe and reliable water supply. With our help, you can make an informed decision about this valuable property feature. Simply get in touch today


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