Buying a home is the biggest investment most of us make, so it is important to get it right. That means making sure you know exactly what you are buying, and the responsibilities or obligations that come with it. The same goes for selling a home, when it is important to understand all the factors that will affect the final price. In fact, homeowners who intend to live in the property have an interest in acquiring a detailed knowledge of its condition so they can plan its maintenance. Whether buying, selling or staying, a survey made by an expert ensures there will be no nasty surprises.
Types of Survey
There are three main categories of survey, ranging in the level of detail, as defined by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).
Survey level one: RICS Condition Report
Shows the condition of the property, offers guidance to legal advisers and highlights any urgent defects.
Survey level two: RICS HomeBuyer Report
Includes all the features of the RICS Condition Report, plus a market valuation and an insurance rebuild cost. It also includes advice on defects that may affect the value of the property, and about ongoing maintenance.
Survey level three: RICS Building Survey
Essential for larger or older properties, or if you’re planning major works. The most comprehensive report provides you with an in-depth analysis of the property’s condition and includes advice on defects, repairs and maintenance options.
Earl Kendrick specialises in level three, which uses the full range of our expertise to ensure complete peace of mind.
Flat Buyers’ Surveys
Earl Kendrick Associates are specialists when it comes to building surveys for flats and residential blocks. We have built our business around the residential leasehold sector, and developed a specific product that is tailor-made to the needs of flat buyers and residential block managers. Our team has all the expertise and experience to survey flats of all kinds, including those in heritage buildings.
Before carrying out any survey, we review the lease and assess the leaseholder’s obligations. We then survey the whole building, including communal areas, external walls and the roof, and advise on the implications of their condition in terms of the obligations that would come with ownership of the flat. We also point out any repairs that might be necessary now or in the future and draw on our expertise in licences to alter to identify previous alterations that might not have been noticed. Finally, we contact the landlord or managing agent to find out about service charges, sinking funds and any planned future works. This way we can identify any financial risks that would come with the purchase of the flat.
In conducting surveys, we draw on our in-depth knowledge of both the technical aspects of the construction and maintenance of buildings, as well as the legal aspects of leases, especially in the context of leasehold properties in blocks of flats. All this means a survey by Earl Kendrick is thorough, in-depth and valuable.
New Build Snagging Surveys
Some people assume that newly built homes will not require much maintenance because they are brand new. In fact, all kinds of problems can emerge early in the life of a new home, which is why there is a ten-year warranty. It is far better, however, to have a thorough survey carried out before purchase, so that any defects can be identified. We are also often asked to carry out a new-build snagging survey to identify more minor or cosmetic defects so the developer can put them right before anyone moves in.