Residential Building Surveys


Are you buying a property in Central London?

Then you should seriously consider having the property surveyed. We are one of the leading firms of building surveyors for residential property in London, offering a rapid turnaround with efficient and competitive service.

What is a survey?

The object of a survey is to tell you about the condition of the property. Assuming the relevant areas are accessible for inspection, we can tell you about the state of the roofs, walls, floors, ceilings, partitions, windows and doors. We can tell you whether there is any structural movement or settlement, wet rot, dry rot, woodworm or rising damp. We give you an overview of the services such as the electrical installations, boiler, central heating, hot and cold water.

Do you need a survey?

All too often purchasers experience unplanned expenditure within the first year or so of buying a property due to the fact that no survey was commissioned prior to purchase. Budgets are usually tight in the first few years of buying a property and these additional expenses are not often budgeted for.

Please click on the pdf to see the Daily Mail Personal Finance article.

There are three distinct types of services in the area of assessing the condition of a property. All three assess the condition of a property, however, there are differences, as explained below. If you are unsure which option is best for your property, we can advise you. Please note Scott Davidson Ltd do not produce Homebuyer or Condition reports.

The Building Survey:

The Building Survey is the equivalent to the RICS level three. It provides a more detailed picture of a property's construction and can be carried out on practically all residential properties. The report is bespoke and tailored to your requests.

It is most suitable when the building is less conventional. This could be because it is very old, it has been built using unusual construction methods, or it is dilapidated. Similarly, it can be very informative if a building has been extensively altered, or if you plan to carry out your own works.

The Building Survey is far more detailed than the Homebuyer Survey. For example, the report may include technical information about construction and materials; highlight further minor defects that would not have been noted in the less expensive option; advise upon likely affects on the property in the event the repairs are not undertaken and provide photographs to give you a detailed picture of the condition of the building.

The Homebuyer Report:

A Homebuyer Report is the equivalent to the RICS level two. It Is a standard report produced by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) to highlight significant and urgent matters. It is typically understood to be the economy service.

It is most often used to survey conventional types of home of standard construction. It is designed to flag up major defects and problems that need urgent or significant attention, because such issues will affect the property's value.

It is the cost effective choice for the majority of property purchasers. But for buildings older than 100 years, period conversions - or for a more detailed report - a Building Survey will be more appropriate.

The Condition Report:

The Condition Report is the equivalent to the RICS level one. It gives a "snap shot" of the condition of the property. The report uses a simple traffic light (red, amber, green) colour coding system to rate individual elements of the property and highlight any areas of concern.

It provides you with an overview of the construction of the property, any serious problems needing attention and any areas of further investigation that needs to be undertaken. Suitable for smaller and newer properties.

We recommend that you visit the RICS website for further details about these services.

Please contact us to discuss or book your building survey on +44 (0)20 7727 0619.