Your Surveying Questions Answered

Who are the main accrediting bodies for surveyors?

 

  • RICS- Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. RICS surveyors provide three 'levels' of survey: RICS Home Survey - Level 1 (previously called a Condition Report), Level 2 (previously called a Home Buyer Report) and Level 3 (previously called a Building Survey). Level 2 reports are available with or without valuations.

 

  • RPSA - Residential Property Surveyors Association. The RPSA provides two levels of survey: a Home Condition Survey and a Building Survey. It also offers a specialist buy-to-let survey for landlords.

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Alan Edmunds
22 days ago

The RPSA is more suited to residential surveys


Who are the CIOB?

The Chartered Institute of Building is a worldwide professional body that represents construction and property professionals who work within the building environment. Chartered members holding CIOB accredited qualifications may use MCIOB FCIOB. Becoming a Member of CIOB is comparable to gaining a bachelor’s degree.

CIOB is the world’s largest and most influential professional body for construction management and leadership. They have a Royal Charter to promote the science and practice of building and construction for the benefit of society, and they have been doing that since 1834. members of CIOB work worldwide in the development, conservation and improvement of the building environment.

Organisations Chartered with CIOB are independently assessed and regularly audited. They can demonstrate that they:

  • Are competently and professionally run;
  • Operate to high business and ethical standards;
  • Are committed to developing a fully qualified workforce;
  • Have a significant number of directors that are already Chartered, either with CIOB or other building environment organisations.

To qualify as an MCIOB a Member must hold either a BSC (Hons) degree in construction processes related to the built environment, or demonstrate academic equivalent either by holding a degree in a different subject or by having their professional performance, competences, and the required underpinning knowledge assessed.

This equivalence was independently audited by the Privy Council and DTI (now split between the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, and Department of Children, Schools and Families) and further recognised under the European directive 2005/36/EC on mutual recognition.

Further, under the European Union first Directive (89/48/EEC) on a general system for higher education diplomas, the UK government appointed the CIOB as a designated, competence authority for building under the terms of the EU Directive. This Directive shows CIOB alongside the RICS, ICE and other Institutes.

Whilst there are differences between RICS and CIOB qualifications, they are of equivalent level and each carry a Chartered status. It is recognised that the two institutes have differing examination requirements in order to reflex the scope of the qualification.

The CIOB has also led the way in the assessment of professional competence and in the UK we are the Awarding Body for higher level National Vocational Qualifications in Construction Project Management, Construction Contracts Management, Construction Site Management and many more.

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Alan Edmunds
22 days ago

CIOB members have excellent knowledge of how buildings are put together


Who are the RPSA?

The Residential Property Surveyors Association (RPSA) is a not-for-profit representative body for independent residential surveyors who are the industry's leading specialists in reporting on the condition of residential properties on behalf of homebuyers.

  • Helping consumers at the time they are making one of the biggest decisions of their lives

  • Helping its members deliver a leading range of high-quality survey products

  • Raising standards throughout the residential surveying industry

  • Working with industry stakeholders to improve the home buying process

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What is CHAS?

CHAS is a health and safety accreditation scheme, primarily for the construction industry and often acts as a type of pre-qualification during the tender process.

Some clients require CHAS accreditation before they will allow you to tender - this is seen more often in public procurement's and commercial projects such as for councils, schools and other public sector bodies.

The purpose of CHAS is to help buyers and suppliers assess health and safety competence.

CHAS can help buyers by reducing the lengthy process of assessing contractors' health and safety standards individually. CHAS can also help contractors by reducing the time-consuming process of completing and submitting full details of health and safety processes on each project they compete for.

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What type of survey do I need?

If you're purchasing a relatively new property that appears to be in good condition, a Level 2 survey is generally sufficient. This type of survey will provide you with a detailed overview of the property's condition at a more affordable price than a Level 3 survey. However, if you're buying an older property (built before 1850), which may have been significantly altered or in disrepair, a Level 3 survey is highly recommended.

Additionally, if you're planning extensive renovations, a Level 3 survey may be the wiser choice. It will provide you with a more comprehensive understanding of the property's structure and reveal any potential issues that could affect your renovation plans.

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Alan Edmunds
22 days ago

Build Perception only offer level 3 surveys - We are very competitively priced, our level 3 prices are comparable to some surveyors level 2 prices.


What is a Level 2 Survey?

A level 2 home survey , also known as a HomeBuyer Report or a Home Survey Level 2, is a standard survey suitable for most properties that are relatively new and in good condition. This survey provides a detailed assessment of the property's overall condition and highlights any significant issues that may need attention. It typically covers essentials such as the roof, walls, windows, doors, and visible elements of the property.

The Level 2 survey is conducted by a qualified surveyor who will carry out a thorough inspection both inside and outside the property, where visible and easily accessible. They will assess the structural integrity, identify any visible issues that may affect the value of the property, and provide recommendations for repairs or further investigation if necessary. A Level 2 survey will give you peace of mind, knowing that there are no major hidden problems with the property.

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What is a Level 3 Survey?

A Level 3 survey, also known as a Building Survey or a Structural Survey, is a more comprehensive inspection. This type of survey is suitable for older properties, those in poor condition, or properties that have undergone significant alterations. A Level 3 survey dives deep into the structure, uncovering potential defects that may not be immediately visible, although keep in mind that Level 3 surveys aren’t invasive.

During a Level 3 survey, a qualified Surveyor will thoroughly examine every aspect of the property, from the foundations to the roof. They will visually inspect and evaluate the condition of the property's structure, uncover potential issues with the plumbing and electrical systems, and assess the property for any signs of damp, rot, or infestations. This survey is particularly helpful if you're planning extensive renovations or if you suspect hidden defects in the property. A surveyor will use knowledge to highlight if they think there are hidden defects, but again the inspection is not normally invasive.

 

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What is the difference between a Mortgage Survey and a Building Survey?

When you apply for a mortgage, the mortgage lender will carry out a valuation on the property to make sure it's worth roughly what you're planning to pay for it.

The mortgage valuation is sometimes called a valuation 'survey', but this can be misleading.

A mortgage valuation is nowhere near comprehensive enough to take the place of a proper house survey. In fact, it sometimes won't even involve anyone visiting the property in person.

So you should always arrange your own independent survey after you've had an offer accepted, to make sure you're not about to buy a property with significant problems.

 

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What is a snagging survey?

snagging survey is the process of checking a new (or recently built) building for defects, no matter how big or small. A well-conducted snagging survey should pick up issues from paint drips or scratches on worktops, to un-insulated cavities and improperly fitted roof tiles. It should provide you with pictures of the defects, a description and the relevant NHBC standard, detailing how it should be, if necessary. 

 

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