Sun 14 Aug 2016
Are you in the process of buying a property and deciding which survey to have carried out? Do you actually need one at all?
This article looks at the differences between mortgage valuations and home buyer surveys/condition reports, and it highlights the potential risks if you do not choose the right survey for your new home.
Home-buyers choosing cheapest survey option
Over seven million owners have chosen not to have a survey completed on their current property - with half of them regarding a mortgage valuation as being sufficient.
This claim comes from Churchill Home Insurance which says buyers are scaling back on the level of surveys completed on their property pre-purchase and often choosing to go down the cheapest-possible route.
Research for the company was conducted amongst 2,000 adults during June, and follows up previous surveys.
The number of owners having at least a base level survey has actually increased over time, from 63 per cent 20 years ago to 91 per cent in the last 12 months, the firm says.
However, the number of owners having the comprehensive building survey has reduced significantly from 28 per cent 20 years ago to just six per cent in the last 12 months.
Issues serious enough to influence a purchase
More than half of those who needed major work doing to their property within a year of moving in said the issues were serious enough to have influenced their purchase, had they had prior knowledge.
Separate research for Churchill, amongst surveyors, reveals some as saying their clients opt for cheaper assessments of their home because they want to save money throughout the purchase process.
Common problems undetected on a less comprehensive survey
The surveyors questioned said the three most common problems with a property that wouldn’t be detected unless buyers had a more comprehensive survey were:
• Problems with the roof structure
Both the RICS Condition Report (ideal if you are having a mortgage as there is no valuation) and the RICS Home Buyer Report will set out clearly what issues there are with your purchase and assist you in your buying decision.
Read more about the differences building surveys and home buyer surveys/condition reports in our Property Surveys - A clear and Impartial Guide.
Please contact our survey department on 01509 239121 for a quotation.
"John German would definitely be our first choice if we decide to move house in the future. All the buyers had been vetted properly so we avoided time wasters which was much appreciated as there's nothing worse than no shows."