If you’re buying a house, you’re going to need a survey. This can be unfamiliar territory for many. Fear not, help is at hand. Here’s how to choose a surveyor along with a guide to the type of surveys they offer.
Essentially there are 3 types of survey.
First, a valuation survey. This involves a surveyor looking round the property on the lenders behalf to spot anything that might affect the security of the mortgage lenders loan. That’s the key point. It’s a mortgage requirement to have one of these but it is you who pays for it. Having said that, as a word of warning its worth bearing in mind what level of cash deposit you’re putting down. It stands to reason that the lenders focus is more concerned on the risk to their total loan amount not necessarily your level of deposit. All they want to know is that the property is worth the money they’re lending you. The biggest thing to note though is that this type of report will detail nothing about the structure or actual state of the property, or any other defects.
This one involves a more thorough look around as well as valuing the property for the open market. It will focus on urgent matters that do need attending to like damp or damaged timbers and it will recommend further specialist reports if needed. As of the 1st December 2008 everyone in Scotland selling their home needs to provide a Home Report to prospective buyers.
Next, there is the full structural survey (also known as a building survey).
This is a very comprehensive inspection of all accessible parts of the property and you can tailor it to suit your needs and what you want to find out. So, if there is a particular concern you have with the property you can ask the surveyor so pay attention to these and report to you formally. Building survey reports are extremely detailed and will provide suggested repairs as well as estimates on cost but do remember that the surveyor will tend to be cautious and over estimate rather than under estimate. It can help to get a second opinion from a builder as to how much you’d end up having to spend.
Tips on handling surveys
Before your surveyor heads out make sure you’ve reviewed all your notes about the property and informed them if there’s anything, you’d like them to pay specific attention to.
If when you get your report there’s something that worries you, give the surveyor a ring, get them to talk about it and talk it through with you. Gather as much information as you can. Try and build a relationship with them. By doing this you may be able to get their ‘off the record’ feelings.
Whatever you do, don’t panic. It’s the surveyor’s job to point out the problems with the property no matter how small.
If there is essential repair works need then get a recommended builder round to take a look and give you some comparative quotes.
If you find problems are suddenly spiralling into thousands of pounds worth of essential repairs that were not immediately obvious on your viewing, you are perfectly within your rights to attempt to renegotiate the price. Tread carefully though as this may come as a bit of a shock or a blow to the seller but it’s worth providing the agent with a copy of the survey and any quotes you’ve received from builders for the work that you’re talking about. This way, everybody will know that you made every effort to get good solid estimates to back-up your renegotiations. It should be the estate agent that tells the seller of the reduction of your offer but also send a letter explaining that you are still absolutely keen to proceed with the purchase and that you hope they’ll understand your revised offer.
If you need a surveyor, get in touch with us today. All our surveyors are locally trained and have undertaken all the necessary training to carry out your home report. They are all Chartered Surveyors and are regulated by the RICS.
Andrew MacKenzie is a qualified Chartered Surveyor with over 20 years’ experience within the Scottish Property market. He specialises in all types of residential valuations including Home Reports, Private Valuation reports and Development Appraisals.
Excellent service, from start to finish. I would highly recommend using the Home Report Company if you're selling a property - admin team are quick to respond to emails (even at the weekend), easy to book an appointment, and altogether offer a seamless service.The surveyor Andrew was exceptionally knowledgeable, thorough, and friendly. Also incredibly fast at finalising the home report.Gold service, very reasonably priced, and would absolutely use again.
22:50 01 Dec 21
The service from start to finish has been excellent, knowledgeable and very fast to ensure we got our property on the market quickly.
BOB SCORED A TAP I.
20:59 27 Nov 21
Sellers really need to seriously consider using this Company for their HR. Brilliant service from the admin team to the surveyor. Couldn't do enough for me and made you feel part of the process.Absolute bargain compared to going through estate agent then local surveyor.Gold star service.Alan Collins
08:58 05 Nov 21
This is my third transaction , I am still impressed with the service, efficiently, professionalism of this Company, highly recommended
19:22 01 Nov 21
Excellent Company for home report in the Scotland. Really very fast and professional. Thanks
18:24 01 Nov 21
Efficient, reliable and timely communication and production of home report for our flat sale.
17:25 08 Oct 21
06:56 02 Oct 21
17:33 24 Sep 21
Andrew is extremely thorough and knowledgeableWe had two properties and negotiated a good priceAny errors were corrected quickly and without question
19:57 05 Sep 21
GREAT COMPANY ,VERY PROFESSIONAL, EXTREMELY EFFICIENT, RELIABLE ,SECOND DEALINGS, AND NOT DISAPPOINTED , HIGHLY RECOMMENDED