Normally, when an offer is accepted on a property the next step is to arrange a property survey. This will re-enforce or adjust the price of the property in relation to the condition that it is in. If something is found on the survey then the buyer is in a position by law to approach the seller to negotiate a price for the works required.
You probably didn’t realise that they were different property survey types and if you are a First Time Buyer, you may have not even heard of them! There are three main types of property survey available to you:
The basic valuation option which is the cheapest available. It will be a requirement to have one of these before the mortgage offer is received. This is not to be confused with a full survey. The mortgage valuation confirms to the lender that the property is worth at least what they are lending to the buyer. Sometimes the mortgage lender may even offer a free basic valuation as part of your deal.
A mortgage valuation will not highlight any repairs that are needed. However, it may point out obvious defects that is recommended to be investigated further.
A Homebuyer’s report will cover the properties structural safety and highlight any problems, including damp, as well as anything that doesn’t meet current building regulations. This kind of report will give you an independent report of the property in question by an expert.
To ensure that two surveys aren’t being paid for, it is advisable to ask the mortgage companies surveyor to carry out this report – on average, it takes about a couple of to complete.
A Full Structural Survey is advisable for older properties that are being considered and those of non-standard construction. Depending on the property size and type – a full structural survey can take as long as a day to complete.
This type of survey provides a detailed report on the condition of the property and highlights all issues that should be investigated further before going ahead with the purchase, providing peace of mind about the condition of the property.
You can find a surveyor to carry out a Homebuyer’s report or building survey through the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.