Sunday 12 April 2009

If you are buying - get a survey

If you are buying a property, PLEASE get a survey. For a few hundred pounds, you can save yourself tens of thousands of pounds.

First, if the survey reveals defects, you can re-negotiate the price to reflect these

Second, if the survey does not reveal defects as such, it will include useful information, and at the very least will reassure you that there are no major problems

I used to think that the only cases where I would not strongly advise a buyer to get a survey was in the case of a newly-built house with a new home warranty - even then, getting a surveyor to prpare a properly-detailed snagging list is, in my view, well worth while. That was until the time that a client decided that, despite the new homes warranty, she would also have a survey. The surveyor spotted that the external wall on one side of the property was not tied in properly - the brick outer skin was not tied to the frame - and could collapse at any time. Though this would (presumably) have been covered by the NHBC Buildmark cover, it was far better to get the problem remedied before committing to the purchase and having to get the problem remedied afterwards.

So, I now recommend surveys in all cases

In addition, buyer should get electrical wiring, gas appliances, central heating systems, etc, all checked by appropriate specialists - remedying problems or renegotiating the price to reflect problems, is soooo much easier before exchanging contracts!

You know it makes sense - get a survey

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