If you’re buying a home, checking for water leaks is a must, experts have warned. According to a new survey, 20% of people have experienced three or more leaks during their time as property owners, some of which can be costly and difficult to repair.

The study, by water detector company, LeakBot, reported that more than half of home buyers foot the bill for water leaks themselves, at an average cost of more than £1,000. It found faulty bathroom plumbing the most common cause of water leaks, followed by kitchen pipes and shower units.

The homes most prone to leaks were post war properties (built between 1945 and 1990). While new-build properties are less likely to suffer leaks, faulty installations mean they aren’t immune and one in 10 homeowners reported issues.

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Prospective buyers are advised to locate and check the property’s stop tap, which is essential to preventing water damage if there is a problem. Buyers should check the tap turns on and off and there is no pooling water, indicating a leak.

From loos to showers, washing machines to kitchen sinks, buyers should make sure there is no sign of leaking water and damp around all appliances and sanitary ware, even if the items aren’t being purchased with the home.

Cold water storage tanks are also ones to watch. These are often found in the loft so check for the presence of a tank and make sure all fittings are secure and fixed correctly and that the area is dry.

According to Craig Foster, CEO of LeakBot: “By cautiously checking potential purchases in this way, buyers can help future proof their home against leaks and prevent costly repairs and undue stress.”

Read more about this story on the Ideal Home website.