Surveys and Valuations

You should find out as much as you can about the property and it’s condition before you agree to buy.

The best way to find out about any potential problems is to have a professional survey. A property can look in tip-top condition to the layperson’s eye, but a professional assessment can reveal hidden problems. A thorough survey could prevent nasty surprises and unexpected costs at a later date. You may even be able to negotiate a better price for the property if the survey does reveal any problems.

Can’t I just rely on the mortgage lender’s valuation report?

The mortgage lender’s report simply ensures they are not lending you more money than the property is worth. The valuation will take into account the property’s age, general condition and location and will highlight obvious faults. However, valuations are very brief and sometimes only look at the outside of a property. Serious and less obvious faults may be missed.

The property I want to buy is under 150 years old, what survey should I have?

An RICS Homebuyer Report (HBR) is probably the best and most economical choice for you. HBRs are carried out to standards set by The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and are usually suitable for Victorian property & younger more conventional properties that appear to be in reasonable condition.

The HBR will assess the general condition of the property and highlight any significant or urgent defects or problems, such as damp, woodworm or rot, that may affect the property’s value. The HBR includes the valuation required by your mortgage lender.

The property I want to buy is older and more unusual, what survey should I have?

A Building Survey is your best choice if your property is:

  • over 150 years old;
  • listed;
  • constructed in an usual way;
  • an unconventional shape;
  • or extensively altered.

It is also a good choice if you wish to renovate the property, as we can tell you if your plans are feasible.

The Building Survey is more extensive than the Homebuyer Report. It will highlight major and minor faults and advise on the possible consequences and costs that may result. The property will be checked for damp, woodwork and rot and specialist information on the construction of the property and the materials used will also be included.

Please note that the Building Survey does not include a valuation for your mortgage lender, although this can be arranged separately.

Book a free valuation

Stephensons Estate Agents