Buy­ing your own house is a huge mile­stone and could be the most expen­sive pur­chase of your life. You’d prob­a­bly pre­fer to not add the cost of a prop­er­ty sur­vey to your bill, but if you decide to skip this step, you’ll nev­er know if there are any defects with your new home. At least not until it’s too late.

Until you find your­self pay­ing for cost­ly repairs that could have been eas­i­ly avoid­ed, you’ll prob­a­bly ask your­self if prop­er­ty sur­veys are real­ly that impor­tant but they are. Not only can they be used to estab­lish an approx­i­mate cost of any defects dis­cov­ered, they can also con­firm the val­ue of the prop­er­ty and ensure the price you pay is reasonable.

Whilst hav­ing a prop­er­ty sur­vey is impor­tant, it’s also equal­ly impor­tant to under­stand the domes­tic sur­veys avail­able to you and know which suit your require­ments. The type of sur­vey you will want to imple­ment dif­fers with every prop­er­ty and depends on how much detail is need­ed, as well as the age of the property.

Lender Valuation

The pri­ma­ry func­tion of this is to pro­vide the Lender with a val­u­a­tion which may or may not men­tion any defects. You may be pro­vid­ed with a copy of this, but it should not be relied upon as a real sur­vey as it is pure­ly for val­u­a­tion pur­pos­es and you will have no recourse for any errors with the Surveyor.

RICS Home­buy­er Sur­vey and Valuation

This sur­vey is also car­ried out by a qual­i­fied sur­vey­or, but is not as thor­ough as a full struc­tur­al sur­vey. Instead, this sur­vey focus­es on urgent mat­ters’ which may be a threat to the fab­ric of the build­ing and then focus­es on sig­nif­i­cant mat­ters’ that may deval­ue the house. The sur­vey­or may not typ­i­cal­ly report on less urgent matters.

Whilst it is imper­a­tive to get a sur­vey done before an exchange of con­tracts takes place, as it’s high­ly unlike­ly you can claim for any defects dis­cov­ered after­wards, there are a few things to con­sid­er. For exam­ple, if the Lender is out­sourc­ing their val­u­a­tion, the very same sur­vey­ors may agree to give you a sep­a­rate report at a cheap­er cost due to the amount of duplication.

If you’re buy­ing a new house, then you are usu­al­ly cov­ered by the Nation­al House Builders Coun­cil (NHBC), which cov­ers major struc­tur­al items for 10 years and faulty work­man­ship for 2 years. How­ev­er, a prop­er­ty sur­vey should still be considered.

Full Struc­tur­al Survey

A full sur­vey that may be relied upon if car­ried out by a qual­i­fied sur­vey­or. Whilst the cost of these sur­veys can be expen­sive, it will be thor­ough and the sur­vey­or will be respon­si­ble to you. The full sur­vey will let you know of any defect to the prop­er­ty that may deval­ue it, mean­ing you may even get room to hag­gle the price.

Solic­i­tors & Surveys

A fur­ther rea­son to have a sur­vey is because your Solic­i­tor will not have inspect­ed the prop­er­ty and will pro­ceed on the assump­tion that you accept the phys­i­cal con­di­tion of the prop­er­ty, unless noti­fied otherwise.

It is there­fore imper­a­tive that you sat­is­fy your­self, pri­or to exchange, that all fix­tures and fit­tings, appli­ances, cen­tral heat­ing sys­tem and electrics are in work­ing order. This includes car­ry­ing out your own inspec­tion and sur­veys / test­ing, as there may be no recourse against the sell­er if you find at a lat­er date these are not work­ing satisfactorily. 

To dis­cuss sur­veys, please get in touch on 01625 523988 or mail@​JBGass.​com