House Surveys- What type of survey do I need?

  • Author: Daniel Curry
  • Posted on: 25th August 2020
  • Posted in: Blog

Acquiring a survey is an important part of the house buying process as once you purchase a property, any problems with it then become your responsibility. Any problems with the property that haven't been flagged up at an early stage could end up being extremely costly, so it is important that the right type of survey is carried out. 

Different properties require different types of survey. This is essentially a health check of the property and will give you the full picture of the condition of the property so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not it is the right purchase for you.

There are three main types of survey, and most lenders will charge a valuation fee on a scale depending on the value of the property. It is important to note that they won't claim responsibility for the condition of the property:

What are The Three Main Types of Survey?

RICS Condition Report

This is the most basic type of survey which is suitable for new build homes or standard construction properties which are in fairly good condition and not too old. This type of report looks at the condition of the property, any urgent defects that need repair, as well as any potential legal issues that may arise from identified risks associated with the property. 

Homebuyer Report

The homebuyer report is used for standard construction properties which are in reasonable condition. It offers a more comprehensive check of a property and is very similar to the condition report, but it will flag up any defects that could affect the property and advise on maintenance or repair options. This type of report may also include a market valuation and in some cases, the cost of a rebuild.

RICS Building Survey

A building survey is carried out for older or larger properties, as well as non- standard construction properties, and is also used in cases where there are proposed major works to a property. It is a much more comprehensive report and will advise on defects, repairs and maintenance. This type of survey will involve a detailed internal and external inspection of the property and may advise on potential costs of works/repairs. 

Who carries out the survey?

A survey should be carried out by a qualified surveyor and your lender should organise this for you within a few days of the mortgage in principle being agreed.

However, in some cases, a buyer may wish to instruct a second survey or a more comprehensive survey on the property for additional peace of mind. Ultimately, you are responsible for the cost of any additional surveys and you should seek to get quotes from local Chartered Building Surveyors- the RICS website can help you search for a surveyor in your area, or you can use family, friends or your solicitor to provide recommendations

Want To Find Out More?

If you are about to enter into the buying process and need further advice, our property experts can help answer any questions you may have.

We are here to help, and we can guide you through the process with clear, jargon-free advice- get in touch on 01273 734 600 or email