House surveys assess the issues of properties for prospective buyers. Chartered surveyors undertake house surveys. They visit the property, inspect it and present an outlined report of problems found. If you are a homebuyer, you will commission a survey after making an offer. Some buyers think that a survey is an unnecessary expense, but it is helpful in making an informed decision when buying a house. This helps you prepare for repairs, or negotiate a much lower price. It is important to know the right type of survey you need.

Governing bodies

Two bodies accredit surveyors, the Residential Property Surveyors Association or (RPSA) and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors or RICs. RICs offers condition reports, homebuyer reports and building surveys. On the other hand, the RPSA offers the Sava Home Condition Survey that is similar to the RICs homebuyer report and other surveying services.

Condition report

The most basic house survey is a condition report. It helps you get an overview of the condition of the property and the most important issues, but not in great detail. This is a level-one survey suitable for newer properties with no visible issues; simply a reassurance of its excellent condition.

Homebuyer report

This is a level two survey that is more detailed than a condition report. It is the most popular type of survey that works like a standard for properties in reasonable condition. It highlights issues such as subsidence and damp. It guides buyers regarding any necessary repairs, ongoing maintenance or anything that does not meet building regulations. It is also non-intrusive, meaning it does not go behind floorboards or furniture, so expect only surface level issues. Generally, this survey includes rebuilding cost and market valuation. It takes about two to four hours to complete.

Sava home condition survey

This survey is similar to the homebuyers report without the market valuation. It presents photos of issues to make it easier for the client to understand. It brings up legal issues as well.

Building survey

A building survey is the most thorough of all surveys. It analyses the structure comprehensively, and lists defects and recommendations on repair and maintenance. It is intrusive, so expect areas under the floorboards to be inspected. This type of survey includes projected timings or costs for repair work and is best for old properties that need renovation. It is also recommended if you are thinking of renovating a property. It is not done on flats, only on houses.    

Some people confuse mortgage valuations with house surveys. Mortgage lenders carry out a valuation to determine if a property is truly worth its price. It is best for you to commission your own survey independently when you make an offer.

The types of surveys vary in how long they take. Of course, the more comprehensive it is, the longer it takes. The survey can be complicated, but it is a good way to avoid unnecessary expense and get a good idea of how much you need to invest in a property. House surveyors Leicester offers range from individual surveyors to large firms of surveyors; always check if they are registered with trade associations.