Posted: Thursday April 8, 2021
When you are buying a property, there are lots of stages to the whole process and lots of key tasks to sort out. It really is worth taking your time here and ensuring you cover all angles. One very important task in the buying process is having a building survey carried out by a qualified surveyor. But why is this so crucial?
Most people don’t know that the valuation your mortgage lender carries out is not the same as a survey. The mortgage lender’s valuation is simply setting a property price for lending purposes – it is not a thorough evaluation of the property or its overall condition.
But what does your lender’s valuation actually do? It is purely done so your lender can check that the capital you are borrowing is not too high. It enables them to make sure you are getting the right kind of property for the right sort of price. This valuation usually only runs to a few pages and focuses solely on the value of the property. While it also will include details on any major defects to the building, it is not a proper, detailed building survey.
A property survey will go into much more depth about the building’s condition along with any repairs or maintenance which may be needed. For this reason, you should always have a separate building survey carried out.
Although a property may look just fine, there are many costly defects that are not always obvious to buyers. Common examples of this include things like dry rot or structural damage. If you do not have a building survey carried out before buying, you could be in for a nasty, expensive surprise when you move in! The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors reports that buyers without a survey ended up forking out for £5750 worth of property repairs after moving in on average! This is naturally something to avoid and makes a survey essential before buying.
While any major defects shown on a survey should grab your attention, they don’t always mean you should forget the purchase. In fact, these kinds of survey results can do you a favour and help you renegotiate the sale price. This can see you end up grabbing a real bargain! But how does this work? If major problems which require expensive repairs are flagged up, this then gives you hard proof to drive the asking price down. It is pretty tough for sellers to refuse when you point out the costly maintenance you will be taking on.
Purchasing your own home is one of the most expensive things you will do. It is therefore a bad move to rush it or cut corners. Doing so could see you invest hundreds of thousands in the wrong place and risk financial disaster. A house survey only costs around 1% of the asking price but will give you total peace of mind that you have the right place before buying. Although it may cost a small amount at the time, a survey could save you a lot more in the long term.
For more information on how Dabinett Surveyors can help, please contact our friendly team.