Should I have my Survey carried out before I’ve had my Mortgage Valuation completed?

Purchasing a property can be a stressful, expensive time.  There’s lots to think about, things to organise and often for some, having not been through the process before an un-certainty about what to do next? Most buyers know that at some stage they need to have a survey done on the property they are purchasing.

At Marwood Surveyors we take pride in offering our clients the best advice, we put our clients’ needs first and to fulfil this we ensure that our clients are guided as to when is appropriate for them to formally instruct a surveyor to carry out a survey. 

To establish timing, at point of first contact, Marwood Surveyors will ask a number of questions, one of them being; Are you purchasing the property with a Mortgage? If so, has the Mortgage valuation been carried out? 

Why is important to ask this question before we undertake your survey? Put quite simply, we don’t want to put you to any un-necessary expense.  Let’s assume we carry out a RICS Homebuyer Survey, you pay in advance, the survey comes back and shortly after so does  your mortgage survey.  The property has been down valued and the vendor won’t negotiate on the price – so you pull out. In which case our survey is surplus to your requirements and a waste of money!

Here is a testimonial from a client who experienced exactly this.

“A big thank you for the advice we received from your company. We had our mortgage valuation come back from the bank yesterday and the valuation came at over £12,000 less than what we had offered. The vendor was unwilling to negotiate on a price and thus pulled out of the sale. Due to your advice of not appointing yourselves to do the building survey until our valuation had come back you saved us the cost of having an unnecessary survey.  I know that not many companies would have done this and would have been happy to just take the money from the survey from us before the valuation had been done so just wanted to provide you with some feedback and it is good to deal with such a company. We are now looking again for another property and without a doubt look to appoint you to do a survey on this property.”

The mortgage valuation is undertaken on behalf of the lender and is designed to provide the mortgagee with confidence that the property is risk adverse.  They will measure this by means of value and condition.  Unlike a survey, a valuation is not a thorough examination of the condition of the building – it is a simple report that lenders use to confirm their mortgage offer.  It only mentions defects that affect the property as security for the mortgage loan.  Furthermore, some lenders don’t allow their customers to receive a copy of the valuation, leaving them with no information about the value or condition of the property.

On the other hand an RICS Home Buyer Report or Building Survey carried out by an experienced Chartered Surveyor will give you either peace of mind to proceed, an idea of what work you will need to undertake once you have taken possession of the property, the need for you to opt out of the sale due to concerns raised in the report or provide you with bargaining power to put forward a lower offer to your Estate Agents. 

The two main types of property surveys are shown below.  The one you choose depends on the amount of information and advice you need.  Some detailed surveys may include a valuation. 

RICS HomeBuyer Report

This survey is suitable for the same property types as a condition report.  It involves a more extensive visual inspection and goes into more detail.  It also includes extra information, like a valuation, insurance rebuild costs and advice on repairs and maintenance.

Building survey

Formerly called a structural survey, this type of survey provides more detail than any of the other surveys.  It’s recommended for older, unusual or altered properties and those in need of work, or if you have any doubts about the property’s condition.  It doesn’t usually include a valuation, but the surveyor may include this as an additional service.

If you require a survey please call the Marwood Surveyors Team on 0121 321 6058 who will be delighted to help you choose the right survey for your purchase.