Building Surveys

When considering purchasing a property, whether it be a buy-to-let or development investment, the long-term ‘home of your dreams’ or a business premises, peace-of-mind can be achieved by enlisting the help of a Chartered Building Surveyor.

We are able to offer you a choice of two main types of survey;

A RICS HomeBuyer Report or a full (structural) Building Survey.

The main differences as identified by the RICS are outlined on this PDF attachment, but to summarise, the HomeBuyer Report provides you with an economy, standard report which identifies what the surveyor believes to be the most important issues affecting the subject property, as well as an opinion of the market value and a reinstatement cost suitable for insurance purposes. This service is most suitable for bungalows, houses and flats that are in reasonable condition and of traditional type and construction.

The Building Survey by comparison is a customised service that provides a more in-depth and detailed assessment of the subject property. It is written in the surveyors own format which subsequently means it can be tailor-made to suit your requirements. It is typically more suitable for larger, older properties or in cases where the property is run-down, has been significantly altered or has major conversion/renovation plans anticipated for it. The Building Survey does not include a market valuation or reinstatement cost assessment but these can be included if requested, along with other additional services such as cost guidelines, feasibility studies, scaled floor plans and maintenance schedules. Depending on the individual merits of the property an additional charge may be applicable for these additional services.

We are even able to build-in the use of a ‘cherry-picker’ to allow closer access to roof areas, to provide a more comprehensive assessment if necessary.

We also have consultant surveyors who are able to further provide asbestos surveys including sample testing, both commercial and domestic Energy Performance Certificates, drainage surveys and fire risk assessments. Please just ask for more details.

Before, during and after your survey we are available to discuss our services and explain our findings; always in down-to-earth, simple language! We leave you feeling assured that you are making an educated and informed purchase of your property.

In some cases, where the survey identifies costly-to-repair defects, you may be able to save money by negotiating with the vendor.

Furthermore we can provide Specific Defect reports for when an individual issue has been identified, such as cracking or water penetration, or snagging assessments for newly built or converted dwellings.

If you are in any doubt on the survey you need, please just give us a call and one of our friendly team will guide you in the right direction. Alternatively, if you know that you need a HomeBuyers Report or Building Survey, please call or use our simple ‘Quotation Form‘ to obtain a fee quotation.

Survey Levels

Survey level two: RICS HomeBuyer Report (HBR)

This is most suitable for conventional properties which are in reasonable condition. The report gives you more detailed information and provides the choice of either a survey or a survey & valuation.

  • HomeBuyer Report (survey)
    Includes all the features of the RICS Condition Report. It also includes advice on defects that may affect the property with repairs, and ongoing maintenance advice
  • HomeBuyer Report (survey & valuation)
    Includes all the features of the RICS Condition Report, plus a market valuation and insurance rebuild costs. It also includes advice on defects that may affect the value of the property with repairs, and ongoing maintenance advice

Survey level three: RICS Building Survey

Essential for larger or older properties, or if you’re planning major works. The most comprehensive report provides you with an in-depth analysis of the property's condition and includes advice on defects, repairs and maintenance options.

Kind Words...

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The building survey report I received from Southdown for my proposed house purchase was extremely comprehensive and helpful. I had partly expected pages of general comments and padding. However it was very specific to the property and very detailed and it was clear that considerable amount of time and effort went into the survey itself and the report. It made very clear the remedial work and action points that are required and it will be very crucial in renegotiating the purchase price. Matthew Symonds who undertook the survey was genuinely interested and helpful in answering the various queries I had and gave me all the time I needed. He clearly understands customer service! The report was worth every penny and I have no hesitation in recommending Southdown Surveyors or using them in future.

Mr M. Grant