Why do I need a survey ?
Before you decide to go ahead and commit yourself legally, you
can minimize the risks by asking a Chartered Surveyor to answer
these questions for you-:
- Is the agreed purchase price reasonable ?
- Are there
drawbacks I don't know about ?
- If so, what do I need to do about
A survey may prevent you from making a costly mistake or it may
influence the final price of the property. The best way to reach
an informed decision on purchasing a home or commercial premises
is to instruct a survey and valuation of the property.
The surveys are provided in various formats depending on the intended
purpose, and include the following:
- RICS Homebuyer Survey and Valuation Report: this survey
is suited to residential properties of conventional construction.
The inspection which lasts from between 2-5 hours looks at all
structural elements of the building from the roof to the drains.
The survey covers any structural movement to the property, dampness,
timber defects and a visual inspection of the services. The written
report and valuation includes an assessment of any defects which
are either 'urgent' requiring action or 'significant' thus having
an effect on value. Where significant defects are found, the report
guides you on what should be done and similarly provides a page
guiding your Legal Advisor on specific issues which require investigation.
- Building survey: this detailed survey is suited to residential
properties and particularly if they are non-traditional construction
and that require extensive remedial works.
The survey provides comprehensive details of the properties construction,
materials, uses and defects. The report is in the Surveyor’s
own format and is usually much longer and more technical.
- Schedule of Condition: a record of the condition of a
building at a point in time, often appended to a Lease, to limit
or define the parties’ repairing liabilities.
- Schedule of Dilapidations: this lists wants of repair
during, or at the expiry of, a Lease and details the remedial
Valuations of residential and commercial properties for acquisition,
probate, bank lending, accounting and insurance. Properties valued
include houses, flats, hotels, offices, retail units and industrial
The valuation process will include an inspection of the property.
(If you require assurance as to the condition of the property,
you will also need to commission a detailed survey report.) The
valuation report will clearly state any assumptions that have been
relied on to arrive at the opinion of value, so that these can
be confirmed. Most valuation reports will need to comply with the
Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors Appraisal and Valuation
Standards. These standards set out minimum requirements for the
inspection of the property and preparation of the report.
Appraisals and advice on new build projects and conversion of
existing properties regarding build costs, before and after valuations,
market rents and saleability of the completed project.