Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire & Essex

I am an experienced independent surveyor, specialising in older homes, such as timber framed and clay lump properties, both common forms of construction in East Anglia, with each having its own particular attributes and defects to look out for. Using the latest technology including endoscopes, I’ll provide you with a detailed and comprehensive breakdown of the structure and condition of the property.

RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Building Survey

Previously known as a Structural Survey, I offer The RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Building Survey, which is the highest level of survey offered under the RICS format, and is particularly recommended for older properties.

  • Professional, thorough and accurate, in accordance with issued guidance.
  • Discussion with client by phone, email or in person.

Graham Ellis, Associate Director, RICS Residential:

“On average, those who did not take out a survey spent £5,750 in additional work to the property which could have been identified in a survey. In one case a home buyer was left with a £385,000 legal bill after not exchanging contracts on a £3.6m house purchase because rising damp was discovered, an issue which could have been identified if they had done a survey beforehand.”

What does a building survey include?

  • The survey is as extensive as is required, and you will be given a detailed report based upon a RICS format.
  • Building surveys are valuable if you are looking at old, unusual, listed, timber framed, or thatched property. The typical Victorian terrace house is one such example, and one where there are often issues.
  • But, I have surveyed many modern properties where there have been significant issues, and often when there are deficiencies that will lead to issues in the future. Just because that house is ‘modern’ does not mean that there are no faults.
  • It is also good to have a full building survey done if you want are considering alterations, or are concerned about previous alteration to the property.
  • The loft is examined in detail (if safely accessible), with moisture content taken of the timbers, and examination for any current or previous water penetration, and any pest or rot.
  • It includes advice on repairs, and provides estimated costs, and will tell you what will happen if you do not do the repairs.
  • The services such as electrics or gas, are not given a formal test, but I do make comments upon visual aspects of the services.

The survey will vary considerably in the time taken at the property. Perhaps as little as one hour in some new build properties, to the whole day with a more complex property. The typical time is around three hours at the property.
As much of the property as is possible will be accessed, in particular the loft, and the cellar, and areas under the floor if possible. Where I cannot access a location, I will make suitable comments, such as a lack of ventilation to a sub floor is likely to lead to rots or pest damage.

Damp is checked, but there is no such term as rising damp, and solutions such as chemical damp proof injection do not always work.

I check the estate agent details, as often they will overstate the size of the property, the condition, and the number of bedrooms. One property in Colchester that I surveyed, was described as having eight bedrooms, but the survey revealed that it was actually four bedrooms. Rooms in lofts often are misdescribed as bedrooms.