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What does a surveyor actually do?

(6 Posts)
runnyhabbit Mon 03-Nov-08 20:36:14

Gor one coming in the morning, and want to know what they will actually do/look at

iwouldgoouttonight Mon 03-Nov-08 20:58:19

Think it depends on what kind of survey they are doing. When I sold my last house the person buying had the basic survey and the surveyor was there for 6 minutes in total - just looked to make sure the house was standing up basically! Didn't check under or behind anything.

If you have a more detailed survey they do a lot more, checking electrics, damp, roof, etc

runnyhabbit Mon 03-Nov-08 21:08:55

Its for a new mortgage, so was a bit worried as some rooms are in the middle of being decorated.

LIZS Mon 03-Nov-08 21:09:37

Look at structure of building commenting ion materials, age and condition, comment on any extensions and maintenance issues, assess its valuation for mortgage purposes and a rebuilding cost for insurance. More detailed surveys look for any signs of damp and wet/dry rot and likely sources, subsidence, may poke in cupboards and attic, move furniture and look under carpets. Could take anything from minutes to hours accordingly.

runnyhabbit Mon 03-Nov-08 21:21:32


The secretary told me it should take about 20/30 mins.

MrsThierryHenry Mon 03-Nov-08 21:26:36

Walks around a bit.

Chews gum.

Sniffs the air for damp.

Writes the vaguest and most pointless waste of a document then charges you £500 for the privilege.

That's about it. My surveyor BIL refuses to do residential surveys as he says they're not worth the paper they're printed on. Ours certainly wasn't - 'may contain damp' actually meant 'riddled with the stuff, get out while you can, suckers!'

I'd get hold of a damp meter myself if I were you and stick it in some external and internal walls (about 1/2 metre up from the floor) - it's just a pinprick and is what surveyors are meant to do.

Sorry to be the bringer of doom, but at least you know what to expect. It's a legal requirement, so pay your £500 and hope your new property's habitable.

(if you know anyone personally who's a survey - ask around) you could always see whether they'll accompany you on a second visit as a 'friend' so that you can get a proper assessment)

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