Should we book a Full Structural Survey, RICS Level 3 Survey or RICS Level 2 Survey for a home in Chalk Farm and which one would be cheaper?
The Full Structural Survey has been renamed by RICS as a RICS Level 3 Survey, although it is basically the same the same.
If the Chalk Farm property is a flat or maisonette, or is an older property, or has been structurally altered, or is of non standard construction (i.e. not made of bricks), RICS advise a cheaper RICS Level 2 Survey.
If you are thinking about whether to do any major works, RICS advise you go for a RICS Level 3 Survey. This more detailed survey is not as cheap, but it does offer comprehensive details of the Chalk Farm property's state of repair in addition to an opinion on defects and maintenance options .
For more information why not get a Chalk Farm Homebuyers Survey Quote on our website or call us 0800 022 4428 to speak to a member of our team.
We are buying a house with Beer stone walls. Are there any defects that need to be investigated? Does the surveyor give advice on this?
External wall maintenance is essential to the health of buildings. Issues including deteriorating bedding affect many stone-walled buildings. Irregular stone walls are found throughout the county, and can require more care and attention that regular, brick-like stone walls due greater impact the weather can have on exposed mortar. Both regular or irregular stone can be mortared with lime-based mortar, though the use of this declined with the introduction of cement. These walls will need frequent upkeep.
Ask you surveyor for details, but the report may specify repointing mortar with a suitable material.
What effect does clay soil have on a home's foundations? Does a RICS Level 3 Survey discuss soil composition the report?
Clay soil-related issues can work slowly over many years, or can arise without warning after a bout of extreme weather or flooding. Specific problems include movement of clay soil layers resulting from changes in their water content, capable of irreparably damaging a home if untreated. There are two terms used to describe clay soils likely to be problematic, 'expansive' and 'reactive'. If a home owner is aware that the surrounding soil has a high clay content, they should monitor for possible signs. If present, expansive clay soil can put lateral pressure on a Chalk Farm house's foundations, leading to bowing, cracks and severe structural damage. Fortunately, there are steps a home owner can take. Your surveyor should refer to maintenance options in their report, like keeping standing water on the property in check. In some more extreme cases, the building foundations may need extra support, but this can be costly.
Will the chartered surveyor report on the condition of the gas mains supply?
The RICS surveyor will locate and visually inspect the easily accessible parts of the gas system. This will mean gas related areas such as the meter location/position at the home, as well as gas affiliated installations like balanced flues. Your Chalk Farm qualified surveyor won't remove the gas fittings and he or she won't conduct any tests on the gas system. Gas is potentially unsafe, should you have any worries about gas fittings, call a gas engineer.
Gas Safe certified Camden based local companies include GAS-GO of 108C, College Place, Camden, London Tel. 07976 719983 and G P Services of 97, Bridgeway Street, Camden Town, London Tel. 07958504280.
Is rain an issue in Chalk Farm?
Despite England's reputation for wet weather this issue is not given the attention it deserves by house purchasers. Signs that drainage are a cause for concern include streaks of dirt down the outside of guttering. Blocked rainwater goods can result in hazardous mould.
Fortunately, these defects are quite easy to resolve, if maintenance is taken seriously. If untreated or poorly maintained, however, the damage will impact both the home's value, and the residents' enjoyment of the property.
For a RICS Level 2 Survey on a Chalk Farm residential property, what will 'E5 - Windows' cover?
The format of the RICS Level 2 Survey is clear and easy to read, and avoid potentially unfamiliar technical language. Red, amber and green ratings give house buyers indicate the severity of any defects or points of interest included in the report. Parts of the report which do not apply to the specific house being surveyed will be indicated with a 'NI', or 'not inspected'. If a house does not have a porch or conservatory, for example, these aspects of the report will be omitted.
For a Chalk Farm home, one example could be a broken seal on double or triple glazing. Where practicable, all windows are to be opened and closed, but not forced open, and vulnerable areas closely examined. The surveyor should make notes and advise the client whether it is possible to operate the window transoms/openings satisfactorily.