Basic valuation

A basic property valuation is required by every mortgage lender before they offer you a mortgage. The basic valuation will typically just look at the value of the property to make sure it’s worth the money you’re paying for it (for purchase) or  to ensure it’s worth the money you’ve entered on the application (for remortgage).

Sometimes a basic valuation will be a “desktop valuation” and this literally means, the valuer will not go out to the property, but will have a look online at the property and at some comparable property sales to make sure the valuation is correct.

It’s important to know that this is not a property survey and you should not rely on this report to assess if the property needs any work or is in good condition generally.

This is the cheapest of all of the different types of valuations/surveys and sometimes the lender will offer this for free as an incentive to go with their mortgage.

Home buyers report

A Homebuyer’s report is a more in-depth property assessment than a basic valuation but not as in depth as a building survey. A chartered surveyor will spend a few hours at the property (depending on the size) and will provide a basic report on the condition of the property.

They often work on a red, amber green system for each area of the home buyer’s report. Red meaning the property needs urgent work, amber meaning it will need some work in the not to distant future and green meaning it looks fine on inspection.

The home buyers report will not go into specific detail on what works the property needs and will not provide a complete in depth report on each section,  but it does give you a good indication as to the overall condition of the property. If some parts of the survey have been flagged up red, it is a chance for you to renegotiate the price of the property with the seller.

Building Survey

This is a full property survey and valuation report into every aspect of the property and its condition. Typically, this report should be used for something that’s an obscure build, very old or has signs that there may be some serious issues (such as large cracks, lots of damp).

A chartered surveyor will spend half a day or more at the property going through each aspect with a fine tooth comb and give you a full report into the work that’s needed (if any).

This is the most expensive of all the available property surveys but also the most in depth and ideal if you have reason to believe that there may be issues with the property you’re buying.

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We are ready to sum it up

Surveys and valuations are very dependent on the type of property you buy. There is no right or wrong options on this and it really depends on whether you would rather save money, have a basic valuation and take the risk that there may be issues with the condition of the property or whether you pay a little bit more for a home buyer's survey and have peace of mind and the possibility of renegotiating the price if problems show up in the survey. An mortgage expert will be able to help you decide on what would be the best option for you. Please call us now… 01206 688568