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Frequently Asked Questions

Please see below the answers to the most frequently asked questions we receive. Please get in contact with us to discuss any aspects of our services. 

  • What Survey do I need?
    If you’re unsure which survey type is the most suitable for the property you are purchasing, please get in touch and we will look at the property and help guide you to the most appropriate survey type. We look at each property individually and give you tailored advice on suitability depending on a number of different factors. As a general guide, we typically recommend the following: A New Build Snagging Survey will be most appropriate for: o New-build properties. A Home Buyer Survey will be appropriate for: o A property built after 1930; o In a good condition; o That has not been significantly altered and/or extended and; o You do not need detailed advice regarding specific repairs and maintenance for the property. A Building Survey will be appropriate for: o Any property type; o Properties built pre-1930; o Listed & Historic Buildings; o Properties that have been significantly altered and/or extended; o Properties in any condition; o Any property requiring specific repair and maintenance advice (essential for older and traditional forms of construction).
  • What is a Level 3 / Building Survey?
    A Level 3 or Building Survey (essentially different terms for the same Survey) is generally the top level of pre-purchase Survey available in the market for residential property. This is the most detailed level of Survey available and is suitable for all property types. At South East Surveyors, we go over and above the normal industry standards for a Level 3 / Building Survey including a wide range of non-standard services, all within the quoted fee. We believe in providing a full and thorough service on each and every occasion.
  • What is a Level 2 / Home Buyer Survey?
    A Level 2 or Home Buyer Survey (essentially different terms for the same Survey) is typically a mid-level Survey in the industry. However, because we do not believe in ever providing a sub-standard service, all of our Home Buyer Surveys will include the same full and thorough level of inspection that we provide with our Level 3 / Building Surveys. This is different to most typical RICS Level 2 Surveys, whereby a reduced level of inspection is often provided. Our stance has always been ‘if a Client has instructed us to do an inspection, we will do it properly each and every time’. Due to the fact we cannot provide specific repair and maintenance advice for this level of Survey, we will only carry out such a Survey on certain property types.
  • When and why is specific repair and maintenance advice essential?
    Level 3 / Building Surveys are the only Survey type that includes detailed specific repair and maintenance advice. At South East Surveyors, we recommend that only a Building Survey would be suitable where: · The property was built pre-1930 · The property has been significantly altered and adapted · The property is of traditional construction (solid wall construction, bungaroosh construction etc.) · The property is in poor condition. For older properties, specific repair and maintenance advice is essential as they require to be repaired and maintained using traditional materials and techniques. Modern techniques and materials are often completely unsuitable and can make issues much worse. Unfortunately, all-too-often we have found that contractors (who do not have the necessary qualifications or experience) carry out repairs using materials and techniques completely unsuitable for older properties. Therefore, it is essential that your Survey contains the necessary information to enable you to instruct the correct repairs/maintenance to be carried out.
  • How much does a Home Buyer Survey or Building Survey cost?
    Due to the complex and individual nature of properties in our local area, we cannot provide a standard price sheet. We ask Clients to provide us with the following basic information and will always review each property individually and provide a bespoke quotation depending on the property features: · Full property address · Agreed purchase price · Details of the estate agent the property is being advertised with · Any specific requirements or concerns you may have regarding the property.
  • How much does a Valuation cost?
    Like Surveys, all of our Valuation quotations are bespoke and tailored to the individual property. We ask Clients to provide us with the following basic information and will always review each property individually and provide a bespoke quotation depending on the property features: · Full property address · Amount and date of the most recent Valuation / Purchase of the property · Purpose of the Valuation.
  • What is the difference between a typical RICS Survey and a South East Surveyors Survey?
    The key differences between typical RICS Surveys and the Surveys we at South East Surveyors provide are shown below and in the attached document.
  • Do I need a ‘Snagging’ Survey (New Build Snagging Survey) on a new-build home?
    Snagging generally refers to faults or defects that exist in newly built homes after they have been signed off as ‘completed’ by the developer. Unfortunately, newly built homes often have issues that would not be obvious to a typical purchaser and require appropriate inspection by a suitably qualified professional. In accordance with the New Homes Quality Board (NHQB) standards, at South East Surveyors we can confirm: · We are members of the appropriate recognised professional associations (both RICS and RPSA) · We hold relevant and appropriate Professional Indemnity Insurance · Our Surveyors only work within their competencies · We used the NHQB approved checklist for New Build Snagging Surveys. If purchasers do not highlight the relevant Snagging issues to the developer within the required period, they will be responsible of carrying out the necessary repairs and improvements themselves. Our professionally qualified Surveyors are here to help with this process by impartially and expertly identifying the necessary issues for the developer to rectify. Snagging Surveys not only help to identify issues that the average purchaser would be likely to overlook, but also helps smooth the process by impartially providing a report to developers in an approved format for them action. The impartial nature of the report can help to eliminate any potential conflicts between the purchaser and the developer when reporting Snagging defects for rectification.
  • Do you provide cost estimates for remedial works?
    All of our Surveys include both a summary of the main repair items and full details with the relevant report sections, however, we do not provide cost estimates as a general rule. This is due to the rapidly changing nature of remedial works costs and the potential for variability depending on remedial options, further investigations, etc. Quotations for any necessary remedial works will need to be obtained from relevant contractors. We advise generally you try and obtain around 2-3 quotations for any necessary works which will help to iron out any discrepancies in the quoted prices and also provide a much firmer base for potential renegotiations with the vendor. Will be more than happy to help point you in the right direction for the right type of contractor/consultant where applicable and provide advice on the suitability of any quotations in accordance with our advice and report findings. For ballpark guidance, the following websites provide some general advice as to typical construction costs for common housing repairs:
  • Do you recommend specific contractors for any necessary remedial works?
    As a general rule we do not tend to recommend specific contractors for impartiality and our inability to verify the validity and quality of works carried out by third parties. We always advise obtaining around 2-3 quotations for any necessary works which will help to iron out any discrepancies in the quoted prices (and also provide a much firmer base for potential renegotiations with the vendor). Some works may require specialist contractors (i.e. works to building services) where the contractors quoting should be members of the relevant governing/trade bodies. We generally list these in the report but are always happy to help with finding the relevant trade bodies. We are always more than happy to look through any quotations received to help advise on suitability in comparison with the findings of the report.
  • Do you provide Help To Buy Valuations
    Yes! We provide RICS compliant and Government approved Valuation Reports required in all of the following scenarios: - Repaying your Help To Buy equity loan when you remortgage - Repaying your Help To Buy equity loan using your own money - Repaying your Help To Buy equity loan when you sell your home. Please get in touch for a Help To Buy Valuation quotation.
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