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Nervous about House Survey: Things to Know

What is a house survey? 

  A house survey is an expert inspection of a property's condition, and identifies any problems to a prospective buyer. It's completed by a surveyor who visits the property, carries out an inspection and prepares a report outlining any problems they've found. There are mainly three types of house survey, including condition survey, homebuyer report and building survey. Each of type covers different range of inspection and costs differently.

  1. Condition survey

  It aims to tell you about the construction and condition of the property; any defects that need urgent attention or are serious; things that need further investigation to prevent serious damage to the fabric of the building; and defects or issues which may be hazardous to safety and maybe where further enquiries are needed

  1. Homebuyer report

  In this type of survey, the surveyor conduct an inspection of the property and offer you a report based on the inspection and a valuation to help you to make an informed decision on whether to go ahead with buying the property; make an informed decision on what is a reasonable price to pay for the property; take account of any repairs or replacements the property needs; and consider what further advice you should take before committing to purchase the property.

  1. Building survey

  This survey will be a more detail inspection and report compared to the other two types. It will help you make a reasoned and informed decision when purchasing the property, or when planning for repairs, maintenance or upgrading of the property; and make recommendations as to any further actions or advice which need to be obtained before committing to purchase.

How much does a house survey cost?

  Let’s take one of the accrediting institution of house surveyor, RICS, as an example. Home condition survey roughly costs £500-£950; homebuyer report costs about £500-£1,000; surveyors for building survey roughly charge £700-£1500. Of course, the price differs according to size and type of the house to be surveyed and what specific services the surveyor provides.  

Common house survey problems

  1. Unstable building. If the groundsinks after the settlement period, leading to a building inclination, it may cause great danger. This is due to structural defect and insufficient bearing capacity and the building will possibly collapse in worst cases.
  2. There arewall cracks and floor cracks. Cracks are divided into strength cracks, settlement cracks, temperature cracks and deformation cracks. The causes include insufficient material strength, uneven stress of structure and wall, insufficient tensile and extrusion strength, uneven settlement of building body, poor quality of building materials, insufficient drying after masonry, etc.
  3. Due to imperfect waterproof process and inferiorquality of waterproof materials, roof leakage, horizontal leakage from kitchen and toilet and vertical leakage downstairs may be caused. Vertical leakage is mostly found at the joints between various pipelines and floor slab. In rainy season and when the water consumption of kitchen and toilet is large, serious leakage will affect the normal life of households.
  4. Poor sound insulation and heat insulation. The bad sound insulation and shock absorption  of partition walls and floors between households will cause a problem of violating the privacy. In some houses, the roof and exterior wall cool down quickly in winter and heat up quickly in summer, which makes the conditions really uncomfortable for living.
  5. Doors and windows have poor tightness and deformation. Some doors and windows start a deformation from installation, and some have problems of poor sealingand partial deformation after being used for a period of time. In severe cases, they can not protect the room from wind and rain and hard to be closed and opened. The reasons for the above problems lie in the poor quality of selected materials, insufficient dryness of wood, or moisture invasion and rough workmanship in the Generally, the quality problems of doors and windows are not harmful, and they only need to be repaired or replaced.

  After knowing these common problems, you may be clearer about house survey. If you are still nervous about it and afraid that you may fail a incoming survey. You can check your house in advance and look for some repairs. Moreover, house survey needs to be entrusted to professional institutions. You should check the qualifications of the surveyor before the inspection.