HOW MUCH IS A PROPERTY SURVEY?

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To start of we can take a look at residential property and make note that the most common types of survey are:


HOW MUCH DOES A HOUSE VALUATION COST?

All lenders require a basic valuation. They need to know that they are not lending you more than the property is worth, and that if you sell it off you will get at least as much money back as you paid for it. Although this is often referred to as a survey, it is really too superficial to merit this title.

The valuer arrives at a value by comparing the property with similar ones, taking factors such as age, condition and location into account. The valuation also points out any very obvious major faults which could affect the property's value, but is very brief and is not nearly as detailed as a real survey.

The basic valuation is commissioned by your mortgage lender, and is for their benefit, but unfortunately it is you who must pay for it. If the house is valued lower than the purchase price then your mortgage offer may be withdrawn, or offered on the condition that specified work is carried out on it first. If it does reveal that the house is worth less than the price you have agreed to pay for it, you may be able to renegotiate the price, but first double-check with the surveyor how the value given was reached, and that he or she is certain you are paying too much.

The basic valuation takes about half an hour, and costs between around 100 and 300, depending on the price of the house. Some mortgage lenders waive the fee for the basic valuation as part of a package to attract your custom.


HOW MUCH IS A HOMEBUYERS SURVEY?

This survey is much more detailed than the basic valuation, and is for your own benefit rather than the mortgage lender's. A large majority of people opt for a homebuyer's report when buying a new home, and it is definitely worth it to be sure that your new home is in good condition. It allows you to evaluate whether you want to continue with the purchase at the present price, and to consider any urgent problems with the property. The homebuyer's report is recommended for houses that are under 50-75 years old, conventionally constructed, and in generally sound condition.

While less comprehensive than a full structural survey, a homebuyer's report gives a good indication of the state of the property and its level of repair and maintenance. The surveyor reports on all visible parts of the property, such as the condition of the roof, pointing out particularly any areas that will need work straight away or at a later date. Further specialist surveys will be recommended if required. Any issues to be discussed with your solicitor, such as parking spaces or rights of way, should be noted in the report. An estimation of the value of the property is also included. The contract will specify exactly what will be examined, so do check this carefully.

It is easiest, and often cheapest, to ask your mortgage lender to arrange for the surveyor doing the basic valuation to carry out a homebuyer's report at the same time. However, if you prefer, you can find your own surveyor.

A homebuyer's report inspection should be carried out no more than five days after you instructed it, and some surveyors will do it even faster. The inspection itself takes between one and two hours to complete, and you should receive the results three to five days later. The report comes on a standard report sheet and is normally between about 8 and 20 pages long. The homebuyer's report costs from about 250 to 500, depending on the price of the house. For example, a homebuyer's report for a 100,000 home would cost around 330.

 


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HOW MUCH IS A PROPERTY SURVEY?
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