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Hi all,

Just after some opinions.

My gf and I are in the process of buying a house. We believed the price to be fair and its in the area we wanted.

We are currently trying to decide what (if any) survey to have done on the house. The mortgage company is performing a basic valuation but we are struggling to decide if we should get an independent surveryor to look at it on our behalf.

To give you some background the house is just under 10 years old and part of a large development (so not so worried about structural issues) and appears to be in good condition.

We are considering the fllowing options:

1. Instruct a surveyor to perform a Home Buyers survey on the property for piece of mind.

2. Going round ourselves to ensure that everything is in order (including demonstarting heating, appliances, looking in loft with a torch, checking all cupboard doors, running taps and checking for leaks etc).

Which would people recommend or can you provide alternative suggestions.

Many thanks

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Full structural

What's that going to cost as % of what the house will cost you ? It's a false economy not to.

You can always negotiate the price of the survey off the offer, as it's bound to throw up a few grands' worth of minor defects that you wouldn;t have clocked even if the place is "perfect". And it might just pick up something major.

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Full structural

What's that going to cost as % of what the house will cost you ? It's a false economy not to.

You can always negotiate the price of the survey off the offer, as it's bound to throw up a few grands' worth of minor defects that you wouldn;t have clocked even if the place is "perfect". And it might just pick up something major.

I thought full structural may be unnecessary given the age of the property. But would be willing to consider if people think its a good idea.

My thoughts are full structural would cost something along the lines of £800-1,000 broadly 0.5% of purchase price.

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We are considering the fllowing options:

1. Instruct a surveyor to perform a Home Buyers survey on the property for piece of mind.

2. Going round ourselves to ensure that everything is in order (including demonstarting heating, appliances, looking in loft with a torch, checking all cupboard doors, running taps and checking for leaks etc).

Which would people recommend or can you provide alternative suggestions.

Many thanks

I think you should do One and Two, because if you employ someone to do "One" , I doubt they will do many of the things listed in "Two".

I had a full survey done once a few years ago, and it made me Not buy the place. Although to be fair, that was a much older house. No two ways about it though, if I had not had that survey done, I would have bought the house ( and regretted it).

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I thought full structural may be unnecessary given the age of the property.

Maybe. Maybe not. It depends on the history of the house eg leaking pipes in the foundations, dodgy DIY electrics, poor quality flashings etc. when I sold my house last year I was rather relieved that the buyers only had a Homebuyers' survey. The surveyor was in the house 15 minutes, and spent 10 of them drinking tea with me in the kitchen ;)

My thoughts are full structural would cost something along the lines of £800-1,000 broadly 0.5% of purchase price.

Right.

It's inevitably going to throw up at least a k's worth of work needed, even on a "perfect" house. if it does, knock it off the offer. If not, sleep easy at night. 0.5% is nothing if it avoids you buying a house from hell.

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Thanks for the replies again.

Given that you said a Hom Buyer survey took 5mins I am less minded to pay for this.

I do actually know (or rather my parents know) a surveyor who would more than likely be happy to go and have a look at the property with me for a smaller charge on an ad hoc basis. This would seem more sensible as although he wouldnt indemnify me if anything wa wrong it seems there may be more value in this as he would provide a more bespoke service and focus on risk,

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Your lender will insist that you get a valuation and the home buyers is only a few hundred more so you may as well. The third type, the full structural, might be overkill. If the home buyer throws anything up you can always get a builder in to quote and go into the greater detail.

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Hi all,

Just after some opinions.

My gf and I are in the process of buying a house. We believed the price to be fair and its in the area we wanted.

We are currently trying to decide what (if any) survey to have done on the house. The mortgage company is performing a basic valuation but we are struggling to decide if we should get an independent surveryor to look at it on our behalf.

To give you some background the house is just under 10 years old and part of a large development (so not so worried about structural issues) and appears to be in good condition.

We are considering the fllowing options:

1. Instruct a surveyor to perform a Home Buyers survey on the property for piece of mind.

2. Going round ourselves to ensure that everything is in order (including demonstarting heating, appliances, looking in loft with a torch, checking all cupboard doors, running taps and checking for leaks etc).

Which would people recommend or can you provide alternative suggestions.

Many thanks

You would be totally insane not to pay the money for a full structural survey done on the house :blink:

If it turns out to have structural issues you are on the hook for the costs of fixing it or any shortfall on the mortgage due to negative equity because you have to sell because it becomes uninhabitable :(

A house purchase is for 90% of people the biggest financial decision you will ever make :o

It could ruin your life for a decade if you make a mistake :(

I have had two structural surveys done on houses which led me not to buy them because the developers had cut corners and plastered them over (literally) ;)

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The home buyers survey is only to reassure the bank that they'll get their mortgage back: so if you're putting down a large deposit, it's very easy to say they will get the mortgage back. ie that the house can be sold for 80% of what you paid for it. Hence 5 minutes.

I heard a builder say: don't buy anything built during a boom. In other words, they cut corners structurally, because they knew they could sell anything.

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The home buyers survey is only to reassure the bank that they'll get their mortgage back: so if you're putting down a large deposit, it's very easy to say they will get the mortgage back. ie that the house can be sold for 80% of what you paid for it. Hence 5 minutes.

I heard a builder say: don't buy anything built during a boom. In other words, they cut corners structurally, because they knew they could sell anything.

hence the necessity in all cases for a full structural survey done by a qualified structural engineer, not a surveyor ;)

Edited by Neverland

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Anyway: why not wait a year? If you're on this website, you already know prices are going to drop another 40% from here (or that's what the banks consider to be a normal drop), so what's the big hurry?

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I would go for the full structural as well as a solid inspection yourself. If necessary have separate electical, pipe, foundation and roof, asbestos surveys done by a reputable firm (probably only needed for larger/more expensive proprty). At the very least you will have peace of mind, you should get your money back on a full structural survey as the cost of any faults can be deducted from your offer. Ask the surveyer if they indemnify you against errors in the survey.

Good Luck and buyer beware.

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Go to one of the snagging websites and download (for a small fee) a list of things to check and what to look for eg how do you spot subsidence ( and where to do research for similar problems at local council etc), how do you check electric sockets have been wired the right way round ( buy a test socket from B&Q or Screwfix)etc. This will enable you to carry out an initial survey. At this point, you either withdraw from the buying process as the cost of the faults you have identified are unlikely to be covered by reduction in purchase price Or you decide to go ahead with a full survey with areas of importance already identified. You are also likely to get a better job if the surveyor thinks you have some idea of what you are talking about. If you are devious, you can withold one of the faults noticed to see if your surveyor picks this up. This will give you some idea of his competence.

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