What is a Structural Survey? - Image 1

What is a Structural Survey?

Posted on: 14/07/2021

If you’re in the property business, you’ve likely heard of the dreaded “structural survey”; but what exactly is a structural survey? A structural survey is a general home inspection to determine the condition of the property and whether any work needs to be done to it at all.

This includes any problems with the property such as foundation cracks, eroded or loose tiling's, etc. But it also includes general notes and points of interest regarding the house, such as hardwood floors, or double-glazed windows.

While expensive, these surveys are essential for marketing your property. A clean survey will make a property more attractive to a perspective buyer, and it shows honesty on your behalf when it comes to disclosing any potential faults with the home.

Let’s dive a little deeper into the process if a structural survey...

  1. Who conducts a structural survey?
  2. What do you get with a full structural survey?
  3. Do all buildings have to be surveyed?
  4. How much do building surveys cost?

1. Who conducts a structural survey?

All structural surveys will be carried out by qualified surveyors, pertaining to the RICS (Royal Institute of Charted Surveys). All RICS members have professional indemnity insurance, making them the best people for the job.

2. What do you get with a full structural survey?

All structural surveys include:

  • A full, detailed report on the property
  • A thorough inspection of both the interior and exterior of the building. And we mean thorough; inspecting every window, door, floor, closet, staircase, toilet, and even the roof and chimney. Essentially, every visible area of the house that a surveyor can physically access. All the while, keeping an eye out for any possible structural problems or concerns.
  • And, if requested by the owner, a property valuation too.

3. Do all buildings have to be surveyed?

While they’re not an absolute necessity it's highly advised that you have one done before putting your house up on the market; this way you avoid complaints from tenants about any nasty surprises you weren't aware of, after already completing a sale. This could also lead to legal trouble, which is completely avoidable; you would be distraught if you had to spend thousands on legal fines because you didn't do a single building survey.

4. How much do building surveys cost?

Unfortunately there isn't a real catch or answer to this question. It's all dependent on the property itself; most survey companies will charge their fees based on location, size, and the type of house. Surveys could start as low as a couple hundred pounds, but slowly creep up into the thousands if your property is significant in size or in an area of prime real estate. There are three main categories of structural surveys that you can purchase:

  1. Condition report: This is really the most basic survey you can get your hands on. While it may point out some structural flaws it won't go as in depth as the other surveys we’re about to mention. Condition reports are mostly used to determine a property valuation. These surveys start as low as £300.
  2. HomeBuyers Report: While these surveys are a little bit more in depth, they are still not quite as thorough as the RICS. However, they are more thorough than a condition report, making them a nice middle ground for someone who doesn't want to go too basic, but doesn't want to go too in depth at the same time. These surveys start as low as £350
  3. Full Building Survey: These are the most extensive reports available. Full building surveys the type that go round every nook and cranny me in your house, pointing out any possible flaw or probable cause for a tenant to be upset in the future. Of course, they are also the most expensive starting at a base of around £500. But you have to remember these surveys are being carried out by RICS professionals, which is a premium.

If you are ever interested in selling quickly, feel free to contact Quick Property Buyer. We pay for all fees including for the survey.

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