The RICS Home buyer Survey and Valuation
This is a property survey report which provides both a mortgage valuation and information on the property itself that will enable a borrower to reach a decision on whether or not to purchase. It is not as detailed as a structural report.
The Home Buyers Report is prepared in a standard format in order to keep costs down. This survey is much more detailed than the basic valuation, and is for your own benefit rather than the mortgage lender’s. The main objectives of the home buyers report are to give you the surveyors opinion of those items relating to the condition of the property which are urgent or significant and need action, and to confirm that you are paying a fair price for the property. A home buyers report is likely to be the most appropriate choice if the property that you are buying is built after 1919 of a traditional construction and free from obvious structural defects. If the property is older than this then you should consider a full structural survey.
Areas which are urgent or significant would include subsidence or settlement. The surveyor reports on all visible parts of the property, such as the condition of the roof, pointing out particularly any areas that will need work straight away or at a later date. Further specialist surveys will be recommended if required. While less comprehensive than a full structural survey, a home buyers report gives a good indication of the state of the property and its level of repair and maintenance.
The home buyers report comes on a standard report sheet and is normally between about 8 and 20 pages long. The home buyers report costs range from about £350 to £650, depending on the price of the house (2014 costs).
The home report cost for an average sized property is around £350 to £450 plus VAT. In addition to buying peace of mind, many buyers find that they are able to recoup the cost of their survey by using it as a negotiating tool in subsequent house price negotiations.