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Published on : November 24, 2021 14:45


How do I choose the right survey?


If you are buying a new property you will need to arrange to have a house survey completed, which gives you a detailed inspection of the property’s condition. A surveyor will inspect the property and will give you detail commentary on the building and they will also be able to tell you as the buyer if there are any structural issues, for example roof problems, damp issues or issues with the chimney.

Below we explain what types of survey’s are available and which could be best for you.


Mortgage Valuation


A mortgage valuation is not a survey but it is a general look at a property to ascertain how much a property is worth. This type of valuation is needed for a mortgage lender to ensure the property has sufficient security for the loan. The cost of a mortgage valuation varies dependent on the size of the property but some lenders will offer a free valuation as part of a Remortgage deal.

Below we explain what types of survey’s are available and which could be best for you.


Who carries out the survey?


Property surveys are carried out by qualified surveyors who carry the right professional indemnity insurance and are members of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Surveyors who are local to the area will have a good knowledge of the property market so will be able to give a good valuation. Again costs can vary from company to company.


Why do I need to get a survey completed?


A survey of the property you are wanting to buy will give you piece of mind that the property is in good order and you are not going to have any hidden surprise costs for repairs. You do not have to have a survey completed but given the many thousands of pounds that are being spent to buy the property paying for a survey could save you even more money.

The survey can throw out queries with the property which could then give you an option to either pull out the sale or negotiate with the price of the property verses the repair costs. A survey would be recommended if

  • There are worries about a part of the property
  • You feel unsure about the property you are looking to buy
  • The property is old, it may have a thatched roof or is of timber construction
  • The property is a grade listed building

There are a number of survey reports that can be obtained dependent on budget and what information you want to know.

Condition report – Level 1 Survey

A condition report is the very basic survey and can cost around £300 or more. This report does not go into much details, so can as a prospect buyer of property could lead to needing more information if something is thrown out in the report.

This report is good for a mortgage valuation providing a traffic light indications for areas of the property. Green means everything is ok, orange means there are some areas for concern and red means there is a requirement for repairs to be made. There is no advice given with this report.

Homebuyers Report or Survey – Level 2

A homebuyers report is more in-depth detailing and is the most popular option from RICS and there are two options to have with or without a valuation.

A homebuyers report with survey only would be in the region of £350 or more. The report will advise of any major problems for example subsidence or rotting but the surveyor is non-intrusive so will not be moving furniture, drilling holes or looking under floorboards. So again this report will be limited.

A homebuyers report with survey and valuation can cost from £450 and includes a detailed survey as well as a valuation and an insurance rebuild valuation. The report is offered via RPSA rather than RICS and is conducted by specialists. The report will be easy to read and will include practical information for example boundary information, damp assessment, broadband speeds. Everything that you do really need to know when purchasing a property.

Building Survey – Level 3

A building survey is conducted by and RICS surveyor and is a full structural survey. This survey can be expensive but is a worthwhile investment to make. The report will be in the region of £300 to £2,000 depending on the size of the property, with the surveyor getting into the attic, checking behind wales, and looking between floors and above the ceilings. The report received will be extensive and will be very detailed giving advice on repairs required with estimated costs and time scales.

Unless you want a insurance reinstatement value included this is not normally included within the report. If you require this too you will need to ask the surveyor to add this on.


Get in touch today


Take the risk out of buying property and have it surveyed. It could save you thousands of pounds in repairs!

Contact our survey department today to arrange a free survey quote.

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