HomeBuyer Report sample

Home Buyers Survey

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The content of survey reports will vary considerably due to factors including the age, type, location and condition of the property, and materials used in its construction.

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Download sample HomeBuyer Report HomeBuyer Report sample

Download sample Building Survey Building Survey sample

Download sample Property Valuation Property Valuation sample

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  Mortgage Valuation
  Property Valuation
  Homebuyer Report
  Building Survey
  Mortgage
Valuation
Property
Valuation
Homebuyer
Report
Building
Survey
Help you make a reasoned and informed decision
as to whether to proceed, reconsider or renegotiate on the purchase
  Tick Tick Tick
Identify potential problems
such as any repairs or replacements the property needs including inspecting roofs, chimneys and other surfaces on the outside of the building from ground level
    Tick  Tick
Can help you negotiate a better property price
Where problems are discovered or a lower valuation is given, buyers are enabled to negotiate a lower buying price
  Tick Tick Tick
Show traffic light ratings
which give you a green/amber/red condition of your property in an easy-to-understand format
    Tick  
Prepare you
for potential costly repairs after you move in
    Tick Tick
Completed by a RICS Surveyor
Surveyor Local’s national panel of surveyors are fully qualified and highly experienced chartered surveyors
Tick Tick Tick Tick
Independent valuation
gives you a professional valuation of the property, helping prevent you from paying too much for the property
  Tick Tick  
Exhaustive report
a more indepth survey on construction, issues and defects
      Tick
Appropriate for all properties
a suitable survey, irrespective of age, construction type, condition and level of modification
      Tick
Highlights urgent issues
Reports on any defects needing urgent attention
    Tick Tick
Ongoing maintenance
Professional recommendations on repairs and maintenance
    Tick Tick
Building reinstatement costs
Included for insurance purposes
    Tick  
Appropriate for standard property types
Suitable for properties built later than1900 of standard construction (brick and tile)
    Tick  
Appropriate for unusual property types
Suitable for a older, unusually constructed (e.g. thatch roof) or extensively modified properties (e.g. extended) or those in need of modernisation
      Tick
Advice for your solicitor
Observations that may impact the legal title investigation conducted by your solicitor.
    Tick Tick
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HomeBuyer Report

Should we go for a Full Structural Survey, Building Survey or HomeBuyer Report on a home in UK and which is cheaper?

The Full Structural Survey has been renamed by RICS as a Building Survey, although it is essentially the same level of survey.

If the UK property is an apartment, or is 100 or more years old, or has been substantially modified, or is of non standard construction, RICS advise the cheaper Building Survey.

If you are planning to do any major works on the UK property, you should you go for a Building Survey. The Building Survey is less cheap but it will offer an in-depth analysis of the UK property's condition as well as advice on defects as well as maintenance options .

For more detailed advice get a UK Home Survey Quote via our website or call 0800 038 6667 to speak to our survey team.

What is a home survey, and what will the surveyor actually do?

There are three main types of home buyers survey, the HomeBuyer Report, the Building Survey and the Property Valuation Report. Each of these has a different focus, so buyers should consider which of the three is the right choice for them:

HomeBuyer Report - A general survey of a home, including any visible defects or issues. If the property to be surveyed is of standard construction, and was built after 1900, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) recommend that the HomeBuyer Report is usually the best choice. The report is delivered in a standardised format for easy reference. The HomeBuyer Report includes a valuation.

Building Survey - A more in-depth survey of a property, including all accessible areas of a home. RICS recommend the building survey for older properties, or those of non-standard construction. Building survey reports are tailored by the individual surveyor, and can address any additional questions or concerns. Note that this home buyers survey does not include a valuation as standard.

Property Valuation Report - The most basic of the three, this report is primarily a valuation, and will not include details of particular defects.

For more detail please see the detailed survey comparison table.

Wood boring House Longhorn Beetle

Does a surveyor check for insect infestation, e.g. house longhorn beetle?

An infestation of wood boring insects can be a serious problem if left untreated. There are 3 main types of insect that account for the majority of infestations discovered by surveyors: Furniture Beetle Account for approximately 3/4 of infestations and particularly common in mid 20th century homes. In fact surveyors find evidence of insect activity in most period homes. Deathwatch Beetle is more common in period properties i.e. 19th century and earlier Wood Boring Weevil common where timbers have had prolonged exposure to damp.

It is worth mentioning that during a HomeBuyer Report, the surveyor does not take up carpets, floor coverings or floorboards, move furniture, remove the contents of cupboards, roof spaces and so on etc. This means that if not exposed, the surveyor will not pick up on insect activity. The Homebuyer Report will however consider all aspects of the construction to assess the potential for damage to hidden timbers. However if you are buying a property in a higher risk category (e.g. over 100 years old) we will advise you to carry out a more extensive 'Building Survey' which is slightly more expensive but more in depth.

If an insect infestation is discovered, surveyors are often able to suggest less costly remedial action than some specialist firms might suggest.

Chemical treatments or replacement if timber treatment may not required and often the infestation is no longer active. It might be that a change to the environment will be sufficient to kill off the insects. This is a good example of how a Home Buyers Survey could save you money as you may otherwise be convinced of a need for more costly action. If infestation is discovered, your surveyor will advise you about your options.

Stucco rendering common on Regency properties

Stucco walls are aesthetically pleasing but can cause problems. What will the surveyor look out for and are they a problem?

Stucco walls have something of a bad reputation for damp, mould and rapid decay. Where stucco has been professionally applied and maintained these issues are unlikely to arise, but where they do occur the results can cause serious inconvenience and will be costly to repair.

Trapped moisture is one of the main difficulties associated with stucco, whereby surface or rain water is absorbed into the fabric of the wall, spreading between the stucco coating and the brick or wood of the building structure. Where a protective, insulating layer of felt or other material has been incorrectly applied, no barrier exists between the stucco and the wall. This causes visible efflorescence, mould and crumbling of the stucco, and damp and decay within the walls.

Efforts can be made to prevent moisture from seeping in between the layers, via excavation and installation of a waterproof, below-ground layer of tar, for example, to protect the base of the wall. If, however, the deterioration has occurred over a longer period of time, it may be necessary to remove the stucco coating from the external walls entirely, particularly if the stucco has already separated away from the wall, and reapply.

If the property in question is listed, or located in a conservation area, you may not have the freedom to re coat the walls with a more reliable material, if the council require 'sympathetic' maintenance.

Many builders are unwilling to work with stucco due to these issues, meaning that if repairs are necessary, an experienced specialist must be hired, leading to further costs. The severity of moisture damage can be hard to gauge with the naked eye, but the potential cost of extensive repairs, and the health risks associated with mould and damp, make carrying out a survey on a stucco property highly recommended.

Roof damage from heavy snow

Will the surveyor be able to see any historical damage resulting from heavy snowfall?

Snowfall in many parts of the UK is not often heavy or continuous enough to cause severe long-term damage. However, in areas of the country which are more exposed, both frost-thaw cycles and damp caused by melting snow can cause problems. Snow falling on a roof can melt as a result of heat escaping from the home, seep into cracks in roofing tiles and brick work, and then refreeze as the temperature drops.

Over time, this will erode brick and stonework, causing cracks and leaking roofs. The seasonal impact of snowfall can make it difficult to assess a property's exposure, but a surveyor should offer maintenance advice to prevent or mitigate deleterious effects. This can include common sense practices such as clearing snow off the roof, but may also include specific guidance for loft ventilation, insulation and drainage.

HomeBuyer Report

Should we go for a Full Structural Survey, Building Survey or HomeBuyer Report on a home in UK and which is cheaper?

The Full Structural Survey has been renamed by RICS as a Building Survey, although it is essentially the same level of survey.

If the UK property is an apartment, or is 100 or more years old, or has been substantially modified, or is of non standard construction, RICS advise the cheaper Building Survey.

If you are planning to do any major works on the UK property, you should you go for a Building Survey. The Building Survey is less cheap but it will offer an in-depth analysis of the UK property's condition as well as advice on defects as well as maintenance options .

For more detailed advice get a UK Home Survey Quote via our website or call 0800 038 6667 to speak to our survey team.

What is a home survey, and what will the surveyor actually do?

There are three main types of home buyers survey, the HomeBuyer Report, the Building Survey and the Property Valuation Report. Each of these has a different focus, so buyers should consider which of the three is the right choice for them:

HomeBuyer Report - A general survey of a home, including any visible defects or issues. If the property to be surveyed is of standard construction, and was built after 1900, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) recommend that the HomeBuyer Report is usually the best choice. The report is delivered in a standardised format for easy reference. The HomeBuyer Report includes a valuation.

Building Survey - A more in-depth survey of a property, including all accessible areas of a home. RICS recommend the building survey for older properties, or those of non-standard construction. Building survey reports are tailored by the individual surveyor, and can address any additional questions or concerns. Note that this home buyers survey does not include a valuation as standard.

Property Valuation Report - The most basic of the three, this report is primarily a valuation, and will not include details of particular defects.

For more detail please see the detailed survey comparison table.

Wood boring House Longhorn Beetle

Does a surveyor check for insect infestation, e.g. house longhorn beetle?

An infestation of wood boring insects can be a serious problem if left untreated. There are 3 main types of insect that account for the majority of infestations discovered by surveyors: Furniture Beetle Account for approximately 3/4 of infestations and particularly common in mid 20th century homes. In fact surveyors find evidence of insect activity in most period homes. Deathwatch Beetle is more common in period properties i.e. 19th century and earlier Wood Boring Weevil common where timbers have had prolonged exposure to damp.

It is worth mentioning that during a HomeBuyer Report, the surveyor does not take up carpets, floor coverings or floorboards, move furniture, remove the contents of cupboards, roof spaces and so on etc. This means that if not exposed, the surveyor will not pick up on insect activity. The Homebuyer Report will however consider all aspects of the construction to assess the potential for damage to hidden timbers. However if you are buying a property in a higher risk category (e.g. over 100 years old) we will advise you to carry out a more extensive 'Building Survey' which is slightly more expensive but more in depth.



If an insect infestation is discovered, surveyors are often able to suggest less costly remedial action than some specialist firms might suggest.

Chemical treatments or replacement if timber treatment may not required and often the infestation is no longer active. It might be that a change to the environment will be sufficient to kill off the insects. This is a good example of how a Home Buyers Survey could save you money as you may otherwise be convinced of a need for more costly action. If infestation is discovered, your surveyor will advise you about your options.

Stucco rendering common on Regency properties

Stucco walls are aesthetically pleasing but can cause problems. What will the surveyor look out for and are they a problem?

Stucco walls have something of a bad reputation for damp, mould and rapid decay. Where stucco has been professionally applied and maintained these issues are unlikely to arise, but where they do occur the results can cause serious inconvenience and will be costly to repair.

Trapped moisture is one of the main difficulties associated with stucco, whereby surface or rain water is absorbed into the fabric of the wall, spreading between the stucco coating and the brick or wood of the building structure. Where a protective, insulating layer of felt or other material has been incorrectly applied, no barrier exists between the stucco and the wall. This causes visible efflorescence, mould and crumbling of the stucco, and damp and decay within the walls.

Efforts can be made to prevent moisture from seeping in between the layers, via excavation and installation of a waterproof, below-ground layer of tar, for example, to protect the base of the wall. If, however, the deterioration has occurred over a longer period of time, it may be necessary to remove the stucco coating from the external walls entirely, particularly if the stucco has already separated away from the wall, and reapply.

If the property in question is listed, or located in a conservation area, you may not have the freedom to re coat the walls with a more reliable material, if the council require 'sympathetic' maintenance.

Many builders are unwilling to work with stucco due to these issues, meaning that if repairs are necessary, an experienced specialist must be hired, leading to further costs. The severity of moisture damage can be hard to gauge with the naked eye, but the potential cost of extensive repairs, and the health risks associated with mould and damp, make carrying out a survey on a stucco property highly recommended.

Roof damage from heavy snow

Will the surveyor be able to see any historical damage resulting from heavy snowfall?

Snowfall in many parts of the UK is not often heavy or continuous enough to cause severe long-term damage. However, in areas of the country which are more exposed, both frost-thaw cycles and damp caused by melting snow can cause problems. Snow falling on a roof can melt as a result of heat escaping from the home, seep into cracks in roofing tiles and brick work, and then refreeze as the temperature drops.

Over time, this will erode brick and stonework, causing cracks and leaking roofs. The seasonal impact of snowfall can make it difficult to assess a property's exposure, but a surveyor should offer maintenance advice to prevent or mitigate deleterious effects. This can include common sense practices such as clearing snow off the roof, but may also include specific guidance for loft ventilation, insulation and drainage.

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