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Which Survey do I need?

Buying a property is likely to be the one of the biggest, most important purchase you will ever make, so it is worth paying for a surveyor to check that the building does not have any hidden surprises.

But every property purchase is different so you may want a little help choosing the correct report for your situation. So what are your choices?

Property Valuation

A simple report about a property that provides basic information about a property with a Market Value.

  • Pros - A simple low-cost report.
  • Cons - Not a Survey, does not include any information on the structure of the property.

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RICS Condition Report

An entry-level report that provides a 'traffic light' rating of the condition of a property and includes planning and building control issues for your legal advisers.

  • Pros - Perfect for modern conventional houses.
  • Cons - Lacks the depth of the more extensive reports.

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RICS HomeBuyer Report

An in-depth report into the condition of a property that provides professional advice that allow you to make an informed decision on if a property is worth buying.

  • Pros - Cost effective standardised report into the condition of a property and includes a valuation.
  • Cons - Does not provide the flexibility and depth needed for some properties.

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Building Survey

Provides a detailed evaluation of the condition of each element of a property with suggestions on which elements are of concern and would need further investigation.

  • Pros - Appropriate for all properties, fully customisable and thorough.
  • Cons - Can provide more information than the property warrants.

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What do the different reports include?

We have produced an at-a-glance table that may help you understand the differences between the different Reports and help you decide the best option for you:

Property Valuation Condition Report HomeBuyer Report Building Survey
Appropriate for conventional properties
Appropriate for unconventional more complex properties
Includes an independent valuation (Optional) (Optional)
Estimated cost of re-build
(for insurance purpose)
(Optional) (Optional) (Optional)
Can help you negotiate a better price
Can identify any potential problems
Show traffic light condition ratings
Highlights urgent issues
Background information on the property and location.
Ongoing maintenance and repair recommendations
Damp-proofing, woodworm, rot, drainage and insulation assessment
Roof space and underground drainage inspection
Structural inspection
In-depth survey on construction, materials used, defects and issues
Describes visible defects and exposes potential problems from hidden defects
Outline and timeline of repair options
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The RICS's advice on choosing the right survey

You might find the following RICS video "Choosing the right survey" helpful to help you make your desion:

Still unsure which report you need?

If you are still unsure which report you need why not give us a call and we will help you in anyway we can.

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