Which survey do you need for your property purchase?

Buying a property is one of the biggest decisions of your life and you will need all the information you can gather to ensure your decision to purchase is a good one. A building survey is a vital part of this process. A survey is designed to highlight any problems with the property or set your mind at rest that everything is well; however, there are so many different products available, and some with similar names, that you might be wondering which one is right for you.

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Is your mortgage lender’s report enough?

If you are funding your purchase with the help of a mortgage, your lender will require a valuation report to ensure the property is worth the amount it is lending. As this is based on the market value and does not include any structural elements, it is only designed to satisfy the mortgage lender. Although you are likely to pay for it, it does not give you – the buyer – a great deal of information.

You are strongly advised to commission a chartered surveyor to complete a building survey London. Your conveyancer, such as Sam Conveyancing, will be able to put you in touch with one.

According to This is Money, four out of five homebuyers will not commission a survey on their property. This is either because they are unaware that they should have one, believing that their mortgage lender’s report will be enough, or because they do not wish to pay for one; however, the report is worth its weight in gold if it highlights a problem that could cost thousand pounds to resolve.

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What are the survey options?

There are three levels of homebuyers survey, as defined by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS):

– Home survey – level one
– Home survey – level two
– Building survey – level three

Many surveyors will not offer a level one survey, as it is not considered to contain sufficient information. You can expect the cost of the survey to increase as you move towards a higher-level report, as it will take longer to produce and include more in-depth information.

A level two survey will raise major shortcomings or defects that might affect your decision to purchase a property or renegotiate the purchase price. The report will be written following a visual inspection of the property and is usually sufficient for most types of residential property.

A level three survey will go into even more detail; for example, it will provide lots of information on the condition of the property and whilst services will not be tested, they will usually be observed in operation.