Standard Property’s Focus On! tips and tricks and helpful info, whether you’re buying or selling.
Standard Property’s Focus On tips and tricks and helpful info, whether you’re buying or selling.
According to the BBC, it’s estimated that on average only 20 per cent of all homebuyers commission a professional survey when buying a house.
This is somewhat surprising considering that buying a property is probably the biggest purchase in most people’s lives.
One explanation for this low figure is that many homebuyers believe the mortgage lender’s survey is sufficient.
In fact, the lender’s survey is simply a mortgage valuation - a property inspection to establish the amount and terms of the loan.
This survey will not tell you if the property is worth the price you’re paying for it, nor point out any structural defects.
To get hold of this vital information you’ll need to get a professional opinion by commissioning a chartered surveyor - and make sure you do this before you sign any contracts.
There are two main types of survey - homebuyer’s report and building survey - but not everyone understands the difference between the two.
The main difference is the building survey is a lot more comprehensive and gives you a highly detailed review on the condition of your property.
Any chartered surveyors registered with the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) will be able to advise you on what type of survey is best for your property or the one you’re planning to buy.
This type of survey is designed to keep costs to a minimum and is likely to be the best choice if the property you are buying is conventional in type and construction, is apparently in reasonable condition and built within the last 30 years.
The survey focuses on defects and problems that are urgent and likely to have an effect on value.
This type of survey is suitable for all residential properties and provides a full picture of the property’s construction and condition. Because the level of detail is higher than the Homebuyer’s Report, a Building Survey is more expensive.
This type of survey is required when a property is of an unusual construction or has had extensive alterations, if it’s old, in need of serious structural repair or if you’re planning a major conversion or renovation.
The final report will include detailed technical information on the construction of the property, materials used and a listing of all major and minor defects. The report does not provide a valuation â?? however, this can be arranged as an agreed extra.
The cost of this survey is from £400 upwards and will usually take one to two days to complete. You can expect the final report within three working weeks of the original survey.
Choosing a surveyor
Once you’ve worked out which type of survey to go for, the next task is to find a suitable surveyor.
Your mortgage lender or estate agent may be able to offer a recommendation, also don’t forget to ask any friends who’ve recently purchased a property.
If these options fail to find someone suitable, try the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). It’s always a good idea to help your surveyor by passing on any information you have about the area, properties that have recently been sold and any potential problems you noticed when you viewed the property.
Romans now has an online instant quoting system. “In just a few clicks you can receive a quote that’s valid for 14 days, saving you hours of time and putting you in control,” said Dan Lowery, director of Romans Surveyors. Visit www.romans.co.uk/surveyors