What is it?
The 'Property Buyer's Survey and Valuation' is what it says: a report on the property that you intend to buy. The main topics include an overall opinion of the property from our point of view. Movement, dampness and timber defects are the main threats to buildings. The inspection will cover all the parts of the structure that can be seen starting from the chimney, outside of the roof, gutters, walls, windows and joinery, garage, grounds and drains. Binoculars and a 12’ maximum ladder are used. Then we inspect the inside the property, including in the loft space, ceilings, walls, floors and joinery. All parts that are accessible are inspected without moving furniture, carpets, stored goods or insulation. There is a visual inspection of the electrics, heating, plumbing and gas, but we do not test the services. We are not specialists in these fields but we will recommend a specialist to report if we suspect a defect. Finally we give our opinion of the market value and also a figure that you should insure the property for.
After this you should be in a position to decide whether you want to proceed with the purchase and at the price you have agreed.
How much will it cost?
Our fees vary depending on the type of property, how big, how old and how much it is. The lowest fee will be about £225, but generally they average £275 - £400 (no VAT payable).
How long will it take?
We hope to get the Report to you within one week of instructions, though this does depend on the owner being available.
Will I have to be there?
No. The owner will be there or we will get keys from the selling agent. However, you can be there if you wish, but try not to get in the way too much please.
Why do I have to have one?
Buying a house is the largest purchase you are likely to make. It makes sense to have the property checked out. Even if you are getting a mortgage the valuation surveyor will only have a cursory look around, and he is acting on behalf of the building society.
When should I have a survey?
It makes sense to have your survey as soon as you have agreed to buy the property. If there is a problem you will be able to pull out or reduce your offer before you spend money on solicitors or mortgage valuation fees.
Why use David Potter?
He is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and has been doing surveys for over 40 years. He will try and give a fair assessment of the condition of the property and warn of any problems that may be stored up for the future. He will also be willing to discuss the matter with you after the inspection. Heaven forbid that there should be a dispute, but he is fully insured and covered by a complaints handling scheme.