What is a home survey and is it different from a mortgage valuation?
A RICS Home Survey is a detailed inspection of a property’s condition carried out by a RICS qualified building surveyor who identifies any problems with the property on behalf of a potential buyer.  The surveyor will inspect the property and then provides a detailed report which outlines any issues they’ve noted. A mortgage valuation is a carried out by a valuer for the lender to see if it is a suitable security for the loan requested. A valuer may raise issues which need attention but doesn’t have to.
Why are the different types of RICS Home Survey?
There are three types of RICS Home Surveys offered through the RICS. The most basic report is Level 1 which covers the property’s overall condition including any urgent defects.  A Level 2 report includes the same advice as a Level 1 but also focusses on defects that could affect the property gives advice on maintenance and repairs needed now or in the near future. The most detailed report is a Level 3 which includes an in-depth evaluation on the condition of the property and gives advice on any defects seen, outlines repairs needed and how to maintain the property.  A Level 3 report is recommended especially for larger or older properties.

For detailed information on each survey, see our detailed descriptions here
Why should I get a detailed survey?
A survey report will identify any significant structural issues, damp and or timber rot that may not be immediately obvious. A survey will enable a buyer to make an informed decision about how much they are willing to pay for a property and also to budget for any repairs that may be necessary. All report will include comments on the exterior fabric, internal areas, services and installation such as electrics and boilers and then on garages, outbuildings and hard landscaping.  It is also possible to use the information in the report to negotiate the price with a seller. 
Why choose a RICS Home Survey?
RICS is the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.  It is a leading global chartered qualification that is recognised as a stamp of excellence.  The RICS establishes and enforces standards for working in estate and property meaning all RICS members are trusted professionals and have to abide by the rules and standards.
How long does it take to get my report?
Your report will normally be sent to you as a PDF document within 8 working days of the property inspection taking place. However, if requested the surveyor can speak to you after the inspection to highlight any issues straight away.
Will I get a valuation with a RICS Home Survey?
Market valuations and reinstatement costs are not included in a Home Survey.  If you require a valuation, you can choose a Level 2 + Valuation survey.  If you require a Level 3 report and a valuation, this can be booked in addition.  Please contact us for more information.
Are Home Surveys suitable for a listed building?
A house is normally listed as it is old and has historic interest and features. A Level 3 Home Survey is designed for larger or older properties including listed buildings. A Level 3 report will provide a comprehensive structural report which includes identifying any defects, repairs or maintenance needed.  Each survey report is tailored and bespoke to each property.
Can I use the survey report to negotiate the price?
Yes, it is also possible to use the information in the report to negotiate a price with a seller. For instance, if the survey reveals necessary repairs that will cost £5,000 you could ask for a £5,000 reduction on the price of the property.  Alternatively, you could ask the seller to make the repairs after you exchange contracts and before you move in.