Why obtain a building survey?

The question might as well be: why not? Frankly, most houses will probably see the buyer out in terms of survival! They are, and have been, built to last for more than one lifetime! So, “why worry” you might say!  However, buildings can offer both immediate dangers and costs which, in the first brief viewing of a new home, buyers will overlook. Even if you visit the property again, there is so much to think about that it is understandable that faults can be easily overlooked. Most viewings last around 20 minutes and possibly, after only a couple of viewings, an agent expects an offer. With a survey we spend 2-3 hours at the property and then further time undertaking desk research. You can see there is no comparison in time spent and, in addition, we bring an experienced eye to the property unclouded by emotion – as we are not buying our “dream home”.

The survey will identify areas of cost which need to be incurred. Whilst all property requires maintenance, typically around 1- 2% of capital value per year, some costs are immediate. A survey will highlight these and this can then be factored into your budget calculations. Depending upon the heat of the sales market at any particular time, it may be that identified costs can be negotiated with a vendor as every buyer will face the same items of concern. In these circumstances, the actual cost of the survey becomes a negligible burden in comparison.

When people purchase a new car, they get a manual on its operation, features and its maintenance requirements. When people purchase a house – typically costing ten times as much or more – they often, for some inexplicable reason, decide to risk the purchase totally blind of information. This can only be described as irrational!  A building survey reduces your risk as you will have a much greater idea as to what you are agreeing to purchase.