An ‘Intermediate’ or ‘RICS Level Two’ Survey
The ISVA HomeSurvey is an intermediate survey, in a format produced by the Independent Surveyors’ and Valuers’ Association. This type of survey is suitable for purchasers of flats and many traditionally constructed houses and bungalows. It is a concise report, designed to identify significant defects and to enable clients to make an informed decision on whether or not they should proceed with the purchase. If required, the report can be upgraded, so as to include an estimated Buildings Insurance Reinstatement Cost figure.
Whilst the HomeSurvey is not suitable for all property types, it is a concise, easy to read format, in which the surveyor’s overall opinion of the property is presented at the beginning, in an executive summary. At the end of the report, the most important findings are brought together in an easy-to-follow three-part summary, which clearly lists the urgent repairs, the matters that must be further investigated before a commitment to purchase is made, and the general maintenance issues.
As an agreed addition to the standard service, I routinely provide a schedule of digital photographs with all Level 2 ISVA HomeSurveys, to provide illustration of the written contents of the report. As you might have seen on my ‘Reviews’ page, many clients have told me how useful they find the photographs, which enable them to compare the written text with a photographic image. I do not know of any other local firms that provide this level of service at Level 2.
An example report is available here and the accompanying photographs are here. The Terms of Engagement relating to the the ISVA HomeSurvey are available here and a leaflet entitled ‘Choosing Between Survey Types – A Guide to Clients’ (published by the Independent Surveyors and Valuers Association) is here.
A Comprehensive, ‘RICS Level Three’ Survey
This is the most comprehensive survey we offer. The Building Survey (formerly known as a ‘Full Structural’ Survey) is a very detailed report on the form of construction and condition of the property. It will describe the building in detail and provide advice on defects, remedial works and future maintenance requirements.
A Building Survey inspection will often take a full day and the report is more detailed than an Intermediate or ‘Level Two’ report. Again, it includes a schedule of digital photographs to illustrate the written report. This type of survey is often chosen by clients that are buying old, large, un-modernised or over-extended properties.
On completion of the purchase, the report can also be used as a useful guide to maintenance planning, over the following years.
An example report is available here and the accompanying photographs are here. The Terms of Engagement relating to the Building Survey are available here.