Huge financial exposure to risk
Staggeringly, at present around 80% of home buyers (including Buy-To-Let landlords) do not commission a RICS HomeBuyer Report when purchasing a property. Considering that buying property is a massive financial undertaking, this fact is both rather alarming and puzzling at the same time.
Even more concerning is that many solicitors also don’t appear to actively promote the benefits and protections that surveys can offer their clients, despite the fact that solicitors are duty-bound to act in their clients’ best interests.
So it’s up to would be Buy-To-Let investors, landlords and developers to educate themselves as to the real risks of buying without a RICS Survey. Experienced property investors know the true value of a RICs HomeBuyer Report.
A RICS HomeBuyer Report includes plenty of invaluable information relating to the property that could be ‘gold’ to Buy-To-Let investors, landlords and developers or equally highlight a ‘money-pit or insurance nightmare’ in waiting that’s best avoided.
Significant structural defects, damaged drains, penetrating damp and asbestos are all aspects of a property’s condition that can be picked up by a RICS survey. In addition, local knowledge such as similar property type values within a local area can sometimes be rather enlightening to prospective Buy-To-Let investors who may be purchasing for the first time in a certain area.
Ignorance is not bliss
When asked the reasons why they did not consider a HomeBuyer Report essential many purchasers stated that the perceived, prohibitive cost of a survey or the fact that their Lender had already carried out a Valuation Survey were two of the main reasons for not instructing a HomeBuyer Report.
However, this is a false economy and could be a very costly mistake. A HomeBuyer Report purchased for a few hundred pounds could well save a purchaser thousands in unforeseen repair bills and the Lenders’ Valuation Survey is just that – a valuation. It does not look at the condition of the property in any depth and is carried out soley to satisfy the Lender that it is not lending too much if the property was repossessed at a future point in time.
Near misses avoided with a RICS Survey
Near misses that were avoided with a RICS Survey:
- A sizeable extension to a Victorian Property in London with no floor plan, no extension listed on the title deeds and no photos featured on the selling agent’s particulars. In this case the surveyor alerted the issue to the purchaser’s solicitor. Upon raising the correct additional enquiries, the solicitor uncovered that there was no building regulations approval in place, missing planning permissions and no freeholder consent. The client withdrew from the purchase and avoided potential serious financial loss.
- A surveyor’s note that despite the property in question being situated in a prestigious enclave of houses overlooking a park, it was possible to purchase the same style of property not more than 200 metres away for less than £40,000 – significantly cheaper than the property being surveyed.
- A garage conversion in Sheffield that had been carried out without the relevant planning permissions and building regulations. The up-and-over garage door had been left in place so that from the kerb-side it retained the appearance of an integral garage, however inside a small side window and internal door had been added, along with carpet, plastering, electrical sockets and lights. If the client had continued with the purchase it was possible that they may have been forced to return the property to its previous layout leading to a significant loss of value and internal space.
LME Move are nationwide experts in the supply of all property services, including RICS Surveys, to Buy-To-Let investors, landlords, new build developer’s PX property teams, solicitors and letting and estate agents.
LME Move are highly respected within the industry for supplying RICS Surveys – including RICS HomeBuyer Reports – for fixed prices, nationwide, regardless of property size, location or value.
- RICS HomeBuyer Reports / Surveys
- RICS Valuation Surveys
- RICS Damp & Timber Reports
- RICS Structural Defect Reports