16 Aug What is a Homebuyer Survey?
What is a Homebuyer Survey?
A RICS Homebuyer Survey is a briefer version of the RICS Building Survey but more comprehensive and detailed than the mortgage valuation and RICS Condition Report. The survey is classed as survey level 2 and is RICS’s most popular survey. The cost of the Homebuyer Survey will depend on the size and value of the property to be inspected.
The Homebuyer Survey is a non-intrusive visual inspection, in which your surveyor will inspect visible areas in your property to report on the condition of your home and highlight any defects. They will not, however, lift up floorboards or carpets or move furniture – for a more comprehensive inspection, the Building Survey is recommended.
The Homebuyer Survey is carried out by RICS chartered surveyors and is suitable for conventional and modern homes in a reasonable and good condition as it visually inspects obvious issues with the property. For older, non-standard, or more dilapidated homes, a more detailed Building Survey is recommended to uncover more hidden and less visually obvious issues.
With the Homebuyer Survey, you have the option to choose either the Homebuyer Survey alone, which includes all the features of the Condition Report as well as advice on urgent defects, how they will affect the property and its value, and offers maintenance and repairs advice. There is also the option of a Homebuyer Survey and valuation, which includes all of the above, plus a market valuation and insurance rebuild costs.
What Does the Homebuyer Survey Include?
The Homebuyer Survey includes a visual inspection of all major indoor features including ceilings, roof, walls, and bathrooms, as well as permanent outdoor buildings and features including roofing, pipes, gutters, walls, windows, and doors. A surveyor will further inspect the heating, drainage, electric, gas/oil, and water services and provide an energy efficiency rating.
The Homebuyer Survey uncovers any serious structural problems with the building such as subsidence. The surveyor will also inspect damp-proofing, drainage, insulation, and damp test the walls to ensure damp is not present in the property. They will further investigate the condition of the property’s timbers for woodworm and rot.
The property survey includes details of all major faults and how they may affect the value of the property and the cost to fix these issues. The building surveyor will also offer repairs and maintenance advice on how to rectify these faults.
The survey highlights defects within the property and rates these issues in terms of seriousness using a traffic light coding system. Level 1/green indicates that no action is required, 2/amber indicates that defects need repairing but not urgently, and level 3/red indicates serious defects that require urgent attention and repair. This allows you to evaluate the condition of the property and determine what action is needed.
Your Homebuyer Survey will provide outline information on the property being surveyed and its location. Your RICS chartered surveyor will also highlight specific areas where you will need to consult a legal advisor to further investigate these issues and seek specialist attention.
If you opt for the Homebuyer Report with a valuation included, you will additionally receive a valuation of the property which can be used to negotiate its price. Your surveyor will also provide you with a reinstatement value, which is an estimate of the cost of rebuilding the property for insurance purposes.
Homebuyer Surveys by Allcott Associates
A survey with Allcott Associates will help you avoid unexpected costs further down the line and budget for repairs, enable you to negotiate on the price of the property, or ask the seller to complete repairs before you move in.
Most importantly, it will give you complete peace of mind that you know exactly what you are buying so that you can make a fully informed decision on whether to proceed with the property purchase.