A ‘Full Structural Survey’ is exactly the same as a Level 3 Building Survey. It is an in-depth inspection of the condition of a property. It provides tailored advice on any issues that the building and grounds have, alongside guidance on the repairs and maintenance that will be required.
Your report will be thorough and very detailed, with comprehensive photographs throughout. It will even include estimated costs to fix any defects; these surveys are ideal for giving you a complete understanding of the property you are buying and whether or not the purchase price is appropriate.
A ‘Structural Survey’, on the other hand, is a different entity – you can read more about those types of survey below.
A Structural Survey focuses on the structural integrity of the property only; the general condition of the building, such as cosmetic issues, boundaries and issues in the grounds, will not be considered. The engineer will use their knowledge of building materials and their characteristics and performance to conduct a thorough investigation into the causes of any defects. If possible, the engineer will carry out investigations to find out more about the property’s structure.
Furthermore, whereas a building survey will cover the entire property and its grounds, a structural survey will focus solely on the structural aspects. Building surveys are normally carried out to give house buyers a comprehensive insight into the home’s condition, and any repairs or maintenance that will be required. In contrast, structural surveys often focus on a particular issue or structural defect.
Structural Surveys are often requested following a survey if a surveyor has highlighted that a particular issue needs further investigation.
However, if you own or are buying a property, and you are confident that it is in sound condition apart from a particular structural issue, you may wish to instruct a structural survey without a full building survey. Such surveys are known as Specific Structural Surveys or Specific Defect Surveys.
Read more about Specific Structural Surveys here.
At Allcott Associates, our team includes both RICS surveyors and IStructE structural engineers. This means that we rarely need to refer our clients for structural surveys. Instead, we can assess most structural defects that are picked up as part of our full building survey inspections in-house, avoiding the need for costly referrals. It also means that our surveys are accepted by all lenders.
We have 15 offices covering the country. Whether you are located in Bristol in the west, Oxford or Reading in the south, Cambridge in the East, the Midlands and Birmingham, South Wales, or further north in the North-West or Yorkshire regions, we have a local surveyor in your area.