Apart from costs, a survey can identify areas of danger. This can include a wide range of issues. Dangers can be immediate – such as faulty electrical wiring – or latent and apparently benign, where a problem can come to the fore much later. Examples of these kinds of problems are as wide-ranging as: serious trip or height hazards, faulty staircase railings, lack of means of escape in a fire or the presence of asbestos.
Matters which a vendor has “learnt to live with” may be totally unacceptable to you as a new buyer or pose a much higher risk to you as a family. Houses which you may regard as immediate “move in” propositions may not be safe to occupy in the short term without early works (damp and mould both being serious examples). This can delay occupation and again may be a clear case where some further negotiation with the vendor may yield results. There are also more major issues which may be present such as subsidence or flat roof issues. Early action in these cases often saves money in the long run and averts further property damage.